• Concerns about mosquito virus keeping pest control companies busy

    By: Tenikka Smith


    CHARLOTTE - There are growing concerns about a debilitating mosquito-borne virus Channel 9 has been telling you about for weeks now.

    Eyewitness News found pest control companies are busy fielding calls from people who want help keeping the mosquitoes away.

    It only takes a few minutes for crews to spray yards to ward against mosquitoes.

    Rick Seifert, president of the Pest Control Authority, said the calls have been coming in non-stop, especially after North Carolina confirmed its first case of the mosquito-borne chikungunya virus that's starting to appear around the country.

    One U.S. senator is now asking the CDC to issue a health alert to help doctors identify and treat those infected with the virus that can cause fever, joint pain, headaches and rashes.

    Spraying kills adult mosquitos, but Seifert said you also want to get rid of any standing water, which can be a breeding ground.

    Spraying your home is just one line of defense.   Experts said you should use some type of insect repellent or wear long sleeves or pants especially if you're going to be out in the morning or late in the day when mosquitos are most active.

    Out at Freedom Park, dog trainer Tyler Pagnoni said he doesn't do anything to protect himself.  "I get bit maybe once or twice a day and that's it."

    The Rev. Kelvin Brown said he's not taking any chances.

    "It does make you nervous because you're running, jogging, and sweating and you don't even know what's biting you," he said.

    There are concerns that cases will increase as soccer fans return home from Brazil after the World Cup.

    Experts said if you should pack repellent if you are planning to travel to the Caribbean or South America where the mosquito that carries the virus is prevalent.

    For more information on the chikungunya virus from the Centers for Disease Control click here.

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