CHICAGO (CBS) — The city will be spraying insecticide in a South Side district Wednesday night to kill mosquitoes and protect people from the West Nile virus.
The Chicago Department of Public Health will be spraying in parts of the Englewood, Greater Grand Crossing, and Auburn Gresham community areas. Weather permitting, crews will begin at dusk and keep going until 1 a.m.
The spray zone is bounded by Marquette Road on the north, 79th Street on the south, the Dan Ryan Expressway on the east, and Racine Avenue on the west.
Licensed mosquito abatement technicians will bring trucks around for the spraying.
“CDPH closely monitors for potential health risk due to West Nile virus and quickly responds to protect our residents,” acting CDPH Commissioner Allison Arwady, M.D. said in a news release. “While spraying is an important step to protect city residents, the best way to prevent West Nile virus is to protect you and your family from mosquito bites.”
The spraying comes eight days after the first human case of West Nile for the year was reported in Chicago. Officials said the Chicago resident, in his 70s, showed symptoms in late July.
Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike said while the first case was reported later than usual, but it is “important to remember that there is an ongoing risk of disease from a mosquito bite.”
In 2018, IDPH reported 176 human cases of West Nile Virus in Illinois, including 17 deaths.
Common West Nile Virus symptoms include fever, nausea, headache and muscle aches. These symptoms can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks.
Applying insect repellent, adding tight-fitting screens to windows and reporting areas with standing water are recommended to avoid mosquito bites.