Dengue fever cases: two exceptional mosquito control operations ordered by the ARS

Two exceptional mosquito control campaigns took place this beginning of the week following dengue cases. One in Blagnac near Toulouse and the other in Lormont near Bordeaux.

The procedure is relatively rare and not trivial. Following two diagnoses of cases of dengue fever, a disease often transmitted by the titer mosquito, the regional health agencies of Nouvelle-Aquitaine and Occitanie decided to carry out an exceptional mosquito control operation in the two sectors concerned. Only the ARS is empowered to make this type of decision, which is a matter of public health.

A powerful insecticide

Thus, Monday September 5 in Lormont, a town just next to Bordeaux, and Tuesday September 6 in Blagnac near Toulouse, specialized companies intervened in a very precise radius of several streets defined beforehand according to the place of residence and the patient journeys. This is the spraying of a powerful insecticide, deltamethrin, which is the only one authorized in France for this action. “This treatment poses no danger to humans and warm-blooded animals. However, it is toxic to aquatic fauna. Hence the consultation with the fishermen. We cannot treat next to wetlands, nor within 25 meters of a water point”, confided Jean-Sébastien Dehecq of the ARS of Occitanie to our colleagues from France 3 who relate the whole operation. If the product is not dangerous for humans and warm-blooded animals, it is not without impact on biodiversity. The product is extremely toxic to fish and freshwater invertebrates.

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Many necessary precautions

The spreading areas are therefore particularly targeted to avoid as much as possible touching the surrounding fauna and flora. These operations always take place at night and are the subject of extensive communication with the population in the sectors concerned. Insecticides are usually sprayed from a vehicle, but also using hand-held devices in places that are less easily accessible.

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For the smooth running of the operation, the inhabitants must take various precautions as explained by the daily newspaper Sud-Ouest for the operation in Lormont: “put in laundry, food or toys outside, move animals away or bring them in, cover swimming pools, ponds and sandboxes, close windows overlooking public roads, stay away from treatment machinery”.

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Of course, you must not stay outside and bring pets inside. Finally, the authorities recommend, once the mosquito control operation has been carried out, to rinse the garden furniture and children’s games with clean water and wait three days to eat the fruits and vegetables from the garden.

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