INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Department of Health today announced plans to conduct the aerial application of pesticide to control the eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) virus in northern Indiana.
The state Department of Health has reported a lab-confirmed case of EEE virus disease in a LaPorte County resident. The state Board of Animal Health has recorded probable EEE cases in two horses in LaGrange County, one horse in LaPorte County and one horse in Kosciusko County. The annimal board suspects EEE in three additional horses in LaGrange County.
Health officials plan targeted mosquito control to help protect residents from EEE beginning Tuesday evening and continuing Wednesday if needed, as weather permits.
“Although it’s rare, Eastern equine encephalitis can cause serious illness and is fatal in about a third of people who contract this disease,” Indiana State Health Commissioner Dr. Kris Box said. “We are taking this step to protect Hoosiers in the affected areas, but I urge everyone to take precautions to guard against mosquito bites and to eliminate mosquito breeding grounds until we have the first hard freeze.”
Mosquitoes that carry EEE virus have a flight range of up to 5 miles. As a result, the affected area includes approximately 375,000 acres in portions of Elkhart, Kosciusko, LaGrange, LaPorte, Marshall and Noble counties.