Statement from Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez regarding continued mosquito control efforts in Miami Beach
Miami-Dade County's Mosquito Control team continues to monitor the number of mosquitoes found in traps throughout the County. As it has been from the beginning, our goal is to reduce the cycle of Zika transmission by reducing the number of mosquitoes.
Over the weekend, the number of mosquitoes found in traps in the 1.5-square-mile area in Miami Beach where mosquitoes have tested positive for Zika has increased. Despite the increase, it is important to note that all subsequent test results from mosquitoes in the same three trap locations have been negative for Zika. In order to continue our aggressive and proactive mosquito-control surveillance, monitoring and response, I, in consultation with Governor Rick Scott’s Office, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Florida Department of Health and the Department of Agriculture, have directed Miami-Dade County Mosquito Control to begin four cycles of adulticide aerial spraying using EPA-approved naled in the 1.5-square-mile area where mosquitoes have tested positive for Zika. Weather permitting, the aerial spraying will begin Thursday at approximately 5 a.m. for the next four weeks and will be completed within a half hour. We will keep the number of adulticide missions to a minimum on school days, and parents may prefer to keep students indoors until 6:30 a.m. following aerial spraying.
Due to the unique topography, high-rise buildings and construction sites on Miami Beach, at this time, we will focus our aerial spraying only on adulticide treatment and larvicide application on the ground by truck or by hand during inspections. This treatment differs slightly from the larvicide treatment we were able to perform both aerially and on the ground in the area north of downtown Miami where local transmission was first identified.
This morning, Miami-Dade County Mosquito Control also began an innovative ground-control larvicide treatment in Miami Beach using trucks equipped with Buffalo Turbines. As far as we know, Miami-Dade is one of the first counties in the nation to use this state-of-the-art equipment using EPA-approved Bti to target breeding areas and reduce the mosquito population. The truck sprayings will also take place over the next four weeks during early morning hours. The truck spraying events will be west of Washington Avenue between the hours of 2 a.m. and 6 a.m., and east of Washington Avenue between the hours of 5 a.m. and 6 a.m., approximately every seven days.
I thank City of Miami Beach leaders for their ongoing collaboration as we continue to work to reduce the mosquito population, both aerially and on the ground.
Miami-Dade County is fully mobilized and we continue our proactive and aggressive response to reducing the Aedes Aegypti mosquito population. Prevention is the most important tool in our arsenal to keep our community safe from the Zika virus. Therefore, we continue to ask all residents and visitors to do their part to keep our community safe by draining standing water, wearing clothing that covers the skin and applying mosquito repellant when going outdoors, especially during early morning and evening hours.