Health officials are going door-to-door in Murrieta warning residents about West Nile and offering tips of how to protect themselves and their families, prompted by a positive tests for the virus in mosquitoes collected from a local neighborhood.
Surveillance of the area has increased, as well as attempts to control the number of mosquitoes in the area.
"Getting face-to-face contact with residents helps us make sure they get information about protecting themselves," said Dottie Merki, program chief for the Riverside County Department of Environmental Health, in a written statement. "These steps are simple but they can go a long way toward raising awareness and protecting people."
The county’s fifth case of West Nile was confirmed recently, when a man from the southwest area of the county fell ill.
Suggestions for residents include:
- Use insect repellent or lemon eucalyptus oil on children under the age of three to deter mosquito bites.
- Be aware and avoid outdoor activities during peak mosquito hours, which are generally dawn and dusk.
- Wear long sleeves and pants to protect skin when outdoors.
- Drain standing water, empty unused flower pots and pools.
- Keep tight-fitting screens closed.
Anyone with questions, or to report standing water and neglected pools, is asked to call Riverside County Vector Control at 951-766-9454.