Pesticide spraying is scheduled to begin in the pre-dawn hours Wednesday in neighborhoods north of the Los Penasquitos Lagoon, where increasing numbers of mosquitoes in the area have tested positive for West Nile virus.
The ground spraying is scheduled between 3 and 5 a.m. Wednesday north of Carmel Valley Road, between the Coast Highway and Interstate 5. The boundaries include the Seapoint Townhomes and Pointe Del Mar developments.
Spraying will continue early Thursday and Friday morning if necessary, according to county officials.
The county sprays annually to prevent the spread of WNV, which can be transmitted by mosquitoes to humans. In most cases, people don't notice any symptoms, but the illness can sometimes turn serious.
Last year, 44 human cases of the virus were reported to county health officials, six of which were fatal.
County officials said they spray low volumes of a pesticide considered to be of low risk to humans or pets.
Residents who want to avoid the spray can keep themselves and their pets indoors overnight, close doors and windows, shut off any fans that circulate outside air into the home, and rinse homegrown fruit and vegetables.
Outdoor activities can be resumed a half-hour after spraying, county officials said.
Pete Reese is a homeowner in North Torrey Pines. “I have young kids and I'm not too happy about the West Nile virus being around. The problem is the lagoon; the mouth gets closed by El Nino storms and when it's not flushing there's a giant bloom of mosquitoes."
County Environmental Health Supervising Vector Ecologist Chris Conlan told 10News, “When the lagoon is normally flushing with the tide it’s not a big issue for mosquitoes, especially this kind but now that it’s plugged up it needs to be breached and luckily that will happen tomorrow.”