West Nile virus has been found in mosquito samples collected from around Atlantic County.

Three new mosquito samples have tested positive for West Nile virus, according to the Atlantic County Division of Public Health prompting the county to advise residents on how to protect themselves from contracting the disease.

The samples were collected earlier this week from Pleasant Avenue in Hammonton, Mill Run Drive in Hammonton and Smith Bowen Road in Galloway Township. All were confirmed positive on Sept. 27.

West Nile virus was previously confirmed in a samples collected from Absecon, Buena Borough, Buena Vista Township, Corbin City, Egg Harbor City, Linwood, Northfield and Pleasantville.

There are no reported human cases of the virus at this time, according to county health officials.

Mosquito ground sprays were conducted by the county earlier this month in portions of Absecon, Pleasantville, Linwood and Somers Point and aerial sprays were performed in August in portions of Galloway and Port Republic.

West Nile virus is carried by infected mosquitoes and can be transmitted to birds, animals and humans. West Nile virus can cause serious illness, even death. Health officials encourage residents to reduce their risk and the spread of West Nile virus by reducing exposure to mosquitoes by following these tips:

Use an insect repellent whenever going outdoors. Repellents are an important tool to assist people in protecting themselves from mosquito-borne diseases. The Centers for Disease Control recommends the use of products containing active ingredients that have been registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for use as repellents applied to skin and clothing and approved for efficacy and human safety when applied as directed. Be sure to follow product directions carefully and consult with your child’s doctor prior to using on children.

Rid properties of mosquito breeding grounds by draining standing water.
Mosquitoes do not travel far from where they breed. Buckets, bird baths, flower pots and other containers can hold water and provide an ideal environment for mosquitoes. Be sure to empty these containers regularly.

Clean clogged gutters; check and repair screen doors; cut high grass around yard.
For more information about West Nile virus, visit the Atlantic County Web site at: www.aclink.org/publichealth or call the Division of Public Health at 609-645-5971. If you need assistance in removing stagnant puddles or floodwater from your property, call the Office of Mosquito Control at 609-645-5948.

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Categories: Downbeach

Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.