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Mount Hope area being sprayed for Zika

Posted at 12:06 PM, Sep 06, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-06 21:35:32-04

SAN DIEGO - County vector control workers began spraying part of the Mount Hope neighborhood Tuesday in an effort to kill mosquitoes after an area resident tested positive for the Zika virus, but not everyone was happy about it.

The spraying was being done in an area bounded by F Street on the north, Market Street on the south, Raven Street on the east and Quail Street on the west.

According to the county, Aedes mosquitoes that can transmit Zika and other diseases were found after an area resident contracted Zika while visiting a country where mosquito-borne illnesses are prevalent.

"Travel to Zika-affected countries is common, and actions to prevent Zika from spreading to local Aedes mosquitoes are vital to inhibit locally acquired human cases of this disease," county Public Health Officer Wilma Wooten said.

County vector control crews use the pesticide Pyrenone 25-5 in an effort to kill adult mosquitoes.

Some residents put up signs that said, "Do not spray," and crews skipped those homes, a local news outlet reported.

Resident Brad Michels said he was concerned about the spray and its impact on his pets, organic garden and daughter. He told 10News that county officials didn't alert residents until Saturday evening.

"The offices were all closed for the holiday," he said. "A lot of people in the neighborhood are gone because of the holiday, and then they come back to find out that they're spraying and they don't know what to do or how to go about stopping it."

According to county officials, the pesticide poses low risks to people and pets, but residents in the area who want to minimize their exposure can take precautionary steps, including:

-- staying inside and bringing pets indoors if possible
-- closing doors and windows
-- turning off fans that bring outdoor air inside the home
-- covering ornamental fish ponds to avoid direct exposure
-- rinsing fruits and vegetables from gardens with water before cooking or eating
-- wiping down or covering outdoor items such as toys
-- covering barbecue grills