First West Nile Virus Death In New Jersey At Shore
The first death in New Jersey related to West Nile Virus hits Burlington County with the death of an elderly resident.
The Department of Environmental Protection did not release the name of the victim, however it was made known he died earlier this week after developing a fever and suffering from weakness and respiratory distress. He was hospitalized on Aug. 26th.
The Burlington County Death raises the nationwide West Nile Virus death total to 15.
State Commissioner Mary O'Dowd suggests residents should protect themselves by using repellent, wearing long sleeves, long pants, and by removing standing water on their property that breeds mosquitoes.
The DEP says it will be spearheading mosquito control by providing counties with additional funding, equipment and expertise to handle the inspect population.
Robert Kent, Administrator of the DEP's Office of Mosquito Control Coordination, urged the public to remove all standing water on their properties that can serve as mosquito breeding areas, use repellents when outdoors in areas with mosquitoes (those with the active ingredient DEET are most effective), and report mosquito activity to county mosquito agencies.
If you have problems controlling mosquitoes, contact your county mosquito control agency by calling 888-666-5968.
Tips for limiting mosquito exposure include:
* Maintaining screen doors and windows
* Using insect netting on infant carriers and strollers
* Limiting outdoor activity at dawn and dusk
* Cleaning and chlorinating swimming pools that are not being used. A swimming pool that is left untended can produce enough mosquitoes to result in neighborhood-wide complaints. Be aware mosquitoes may even breed in the water that collects on pool covers
* Using landscaping to eliminate standing water that collects on your property. Mosquitoes will develop in any puddle that lasts more than four days
* Maintaining mechanical barriers, such as window and door screens, to prevent mosquitoes from entering buildings. Barriers over rain barrels or cistern and septic pipes will deny female mosquitoes the opportunity to lay eggs on water
* Ensuring that gutters are not clogged and are running freely
To date New Jersey has confirmed 15 cases of WNV from 12 counties including: Bergen (1), Burlington (1), Camden (1), Essex (2), Gloucester (1), Hudson (1), Mercer (1), Middlesex (1), Monmouth (1), Ocean (3), Passaic (1) and Salem (1).