News Releases

Mosquito Control Update: County Orders Second Round of Truck Spraying

Oct 04, 2018

As Cumberland County residents continue to battle against the onslaught of mosquitoes caused by Hurricane Florence, the Department of Public Health has contracted for a second round of ground spraying scheduled to begin today at 7 p.m. east of the Cape Fear River. The action is being taken as an added measure while the county continues to pursue contracting for aerial spraying.

The spraying will start with targeting low-lying areas with standing water and places where flooding occurred along the Cape Fear and Little Rivers. The trucks will spray along primary and secondary roads in the county and all municipalities, excluding Hope Mills, which is conducting its own spraying. As with the first round, truck spraying will not occur on the Fort Bragg military reservation. 

“We are formulating a plan of action that will get into the sections where there are large areas of remaining water,” said Deputy Health Director Rod Jenkins, the interim Environmental Health Director.

The project is estimated to take approximately four days if weather permits. Rain and high winds could affect the schedule.

The spray from the trucks, which travel at 30 miles per hour, will cover a 300-foot swath. The particles remain in the air for about two hours and will drift to cover a wide area. The product being sprayed is EcoVia, a botanical insecticide, with low toxicity to humans and pets. When the trucks come by, people and pets should stay out of the immediate spray area as a precaution.

The crews will work a 12-hour shift tonight and will resume Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 7 p.m. until approximately 3 a.m. The overnight spraying time is most conducive to killing mosquitoes and avoiding contact with people and pets.

The cost for the contract is $89,950, the same as the first round of spraying. In addition, the County plans to issue a Request for Proposal to receive bids for aerial spraying across the county.

Gov. Roy Cooper ordered $4 million in state funding be allocated for mosquito control efforts in the counties currently under a major disaster declaration, including Cumberland County. Cumberland County’s share is estimated to be approximately $269,000. The state funding can cover both ground and aerial spraying. In addition, FEMA will reimburse up to 75 percent of mosquito control following a disaster such as flooding and the County plans to fully maximize all available funds to offset the local burden.

Beekeepers
Beekeepers registered with DriftWatch.org are being notified of the spraying or may call the Environmental Health section of the Cumberland County Department of Public Health at 910-433-3600 for additional information.  Environmental Health encourages beekeepers to register and identify themselves on Driftwatch.org.

In the meantime, while outdoors, people should remember to:

  • Use mosquito repellent that contains DEET or an equivalent when outside and use caution when applying to children.
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants while outdoors.
  • Make all efforts to dump or discard any amount of standing water around their homes, to the fullest extent possible.

More information on protective measures to reduce the risk of mosquito bites is available online at ncdhhs.gov/hurricane-florence-mosquitoes.