SPARTANBURG, SC (WSPA) – The city of Spartanburg is trying to protect people from the West Nile Virus after a confirmed case this week.
Crews will spraying for mosquitoes on the east side of town Wednesday night.
“We try to come out at least four times a week,” said Nichole Ross, who frequents the Mary Black Rail Trail with friends. “In the warmer temperatures we were taking precautions, using bug spray.”
The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control is warning folks like her that mosquito season is not over.
Another human case of the West Nile Virus was found in Spartanburg this week.
“A physician or healthcare provider is required by state law to notify DHEC, who then notifies county emergency management, who then notified us.” said Christopher George with the City of Spartanburg. “That’s how we came up with this spraying plan, which is the same thing that DHEC recommends in all of these cases of West Nile.”
Medical experts say most people infected with West Nile do not develop symptoms.
“Flu like symptoms – nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, maybe some body aches, headaches are sometimes common,” said ReGenesis Health Care Nurse Practitioner Roland Rogers. “Probably 70%-80% have no clinical symptoms so those cases are likely never reported. It’s the very few cases, the 10% that have the headache, flu-like symptoms. Those are usually lasting anywhere from a few days to a week, and most resolve on their own.”
Officials say people with these symptoms who have been bitten by a mosquito within the last 15 days should see a physician.
“Sometimes the provider, especially if there have been recent outbreaks like we’re experiencing now, will kind of be on the lookout and they can order special laboratory blood tests,” said Rogers. “Sometimes in the severe cases, they’ll test the cerebral spinal fluid.”
Human West Nile cases have been confirmed in Anderson – which was fatal, Greenville, Laurens, Union, and Spartanburg counties this year.
“The last thing we would want is to have more cases of West Nile,” said George. “You get one of these cases and the best thing is to try and nip the problem in the bud.”
Duncan Park is among the Spartanburg neighborhoods that will be sprayed, as well as Converse Heights, Fernwood, Andrews Farm, and South Converse.
“As long as it’s safe and there’s research proving that it’s safe then I definitely think that it’s a positive thing that they’re [city] being proactive,” said Ross. “When I first heard about it, I had a few questions about what they were spraying.”
The city has contracted with Gregory Pest Solutions to spray Aqua Reslin. The city says while it does not pose any threats to people or pets, beekeepers need to take precautions by moving their hives before the insecticide is sprayed.
“If you are a beekeeper in that area you might want to move your hive. We’ve been in contact with the Spartanburg beekeeping association so if you’re a member of that they should’ve gotten in contact with you,” said George.
The city says it can’t confirm the victim contracted the virus in Spartanburg.