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    West Nile Virus Warning Signs Posted @ Lakewood Golf Course & Bolivar Park in Lakewood

    (June 21, 2004) -- West Nile Virus warning signs have been posted at the Lakewood Golf Course and nearby Bolivar Park in Lakewood.

    The signs, posted by the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District (GLACVCD), ask the public to take precautions by wearing long sleeve shirts and long pants...and to apply mosquito repellent with the active ingredient DEET when outdoors at dawn and dusk, says District Manager Jack Hazelrigg, Ph.D. in a written release. The signs do not discourage recreational activities in daytime hours, the District said in its release.

    WNV warning signs have also been posted at Harbor Lake (in Ken Malloy Harbor Regional Park in Harbor City), Whittier Narrows Nature Preserve (South El Monte) and the San Gabriel River corridor (Pico Rivera).

    GLACVCD has responsibility for mosquito abatement in 35 cities...including the eastern half of LB (east of Lakewood Blvd. and north of PCH). LB's Dept. of Health and Human Services is in charge of mosquito abatement in most of the rest of LB.

    West Nile virus spreads when mosquitoes bite infected birds and consequently transmit the virus to humans and animals through future bites, the District said in a written release.

    "Once the virus is in the mosquito population, it significantly increases the risk of disease transmission to people and animals," said Minoo Madon, GLACVCD's Scientific Technical Services Director.

    GLACVCD's release adds:

    Areas with positive West Nile virus mosquitoes are also experiencing an increase in dead birds, especially crows, since they are highly susceptible to the virus and die. A total of 33 dead birds collected between May 25-June 1, in the cities of Cerritos, Downey, Hacienda Heights, La Mirada, Pico Rivera, Santa Fe Springs, South El Monte, and Whittier tested positive for West Nile virus. Since March 8, 2004, 76 birds tested positive for West Nile virus within GLACVCD and 166 birds throughout Los Angeles County, surpassing last year’s total of 65 West Nile virus positive birds. West Nile virus is not spread by person-person contact or directly from birds to humans. While there is no evidence that people can get the virus from handling live or dead birds, individuals should not attempt to catch or handle live, sick birds.

    Approximately 80% of people who are infected with West Nile virus experience no symptoms. Of the 20% who become ill, symptoms may include fever, headache, nausea, skin, rash, and/or swollen lymph nodes. Initially, these symptoms were considered mild and not long lasting, but in recent findings, symptoms can last up to three weeks and may lead to permanent neurological damage. It is estimated that 1 in 150 people who are infected will require hospitalization with intensive supportive therapy.

    Residents can protect themselves and their family by playing an active role in mosquito prevention by doing the following:

  • Mosquitoes breed in standing water. Eliminate standing water on your property by dumping or draining water in neglected swimming pools, ponds, rain barrels, discarded tires, buckets, or anything holding water for more than a few days. This will stop the mosquito life cycle.

  • Wear loose, light colored, long sleeve shirts and pants outdoors, especially at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.

  • Use mosquito repellent containing DEET.

  • Keep tight fitting screens on doors and windows to prevent mosquitoes from entering homes.

  • Recent coverage:

  • Ground Zero For West Nile Virus: See Maps Showing WNV Totals & Recent WNV-Infected Dead Birds

  • It's Here: Dead Crow w/ West Nile Virus ID'd in LB; Residents Again Urged to Take Precautions

  • ELB Email to Cites Add'l Standing Water

  • More WNV Infected Crows in Cerritos...And First CA 04 Human Case in San B'dino County

  • West Nile Virus Expert Says We're In Midst Of Largest Mosquito-Borne Virus Outbreak in North American History & Biggest West Nile Virus Outbreak Ever Documented in the World

  • Editorial: Biting Back: Our Suggestions Re WNV in LB

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