2014-06-13 / Business News

Rockaway Pest Control

Summer’s here, and so are the bugs.

In an effort to curb what appears to be a growing mosquito problem on the peninsula and other parts of Queens, Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder is looking to increase mosquito spraying in order to stop adult mosquito breeding before it starts.

“Southern Queens and Rockaway has always been a known breeding ground for mosquitoes and Sandy has only made it worse,” Goldfeder said. “Controlling the mosquito population is not only a quality of life concern, but West Nile can be fatal, particularly to young children and seniors.”

Queens has had more than 100 cases of reported West Nile Virus and other mosquito-borne infections, twice as high as any other borough in the past decade.

Goldfeder has encouraged the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) to closely monitor mosquito breeding in an effort to eliminate any potential threats, such as West Nile or other mosquito-borne infections in the Sandy-damaged communities of Southern Queens and Rockaway.

Areas of standing water, road construction, clogged sewers, catch basins and obstructed waterways has created a welcoming atmosphere for mosquitoes throughout Southern Queens and Rockaway. More resources are needed to spray, monitor and trap larva to control the number of adult mosquitoes that could breed and carry infections that will potentially harm residents. Last summer we had a low number of reported West Nile in Queens and we want to continue to keep those numbers low, Goldfeder noted.

“Spraying of mosquitoes is a responsible way to rid our area of pests that can carry potential diseases,” Joann Ariola, president of the Howard Beach-Lindenwood Civic said.

In his letter to DOHMH, Goldfeder urged the agency to increase their mosquito spraying and to work with the Department of Environmental Protection to continue the use of mosquito magnet traps which survey and control adult mosquitoes at wastewater treatment plants, as well as work with the Department of Sanitation to enforce lot cleaning.

“The programmatic application of adultcide four to five times a summer would provide the relief our residents deserve,” Jonathan Gaska, district manager of Community Board 14 said. “The Department of Health has done this in the past and it always comes down to spending money that the DOH simply does not want to spend!”

Since 1999, 113 cases of the West Nile Virus have been reported by Queens County residents — twice as high as any other borough throughout the city. In addition to West Nile, two other mosquito borne infections have been found in recent years, including dengue fever, which is detected every year, but deemed to be acquired outside of the city. However last year, the city reported 139 infected cases.

“Frequently flooded lots and roads create the perfect habitat for larva to grow and I strongly urge the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to work with all the necessary city agencies to ensure mosquito breeding is controlled this summer and help residents in their recovery efforts,” Goldfeder said. “Let’s not wait until it’s too late and take the necessary action now to control the mosquito breeding before it starts."

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