Emilia Romagna flood and mosquitoes, Region: “No virus detected, larvicide via drone”

“Requested authorization by way of derogation from the Ministry of Health to distribute the product in flooded areas”

“The analyzes of the samples collected” in Emilia Romagna, hit by the floods, since the beginning of May “have not detected the presence of viruses” carried by mosquitoes, “a sign that at the moment the impact of these insects is limited to a ‘nuisance effect’, without an established health risk”. To communicate it Region Emilia Romagna, announcing that “a series of technical indications to strengthen the control of mosquitoes in flooded areas” have in any case been defined by the Department of Health Policies, “with the collaboration of the regional technical group dedicated to the prevention of arboviruses, and sent to Ausl and Municipalities.

Extraordinary measures against mosquitoes: drones to distribute larvicide

Extraordinary measures that integrate the regional arbovirus plan approved last April by the council, with which the search for any pathogenic viruses has regularly started since the beginning of May, through the capture and subsequent analysis of adult mosquitoes”. Furthermore, “it is an authorization by way of derogation was requested from the Ministry of Health to be able to use drones for the distribution of the larvicidal product, given the operational difficulties in reaching the large flooded portions from the ground”.

“All the Municipalities of the provinces of Bologna, Ravenna, Forlì-Cesena and Rimini – explains a regional note – are called to guarantee a correct and complete implementation of the measures envisaged by the Regional Plan, to contribute to the prevention of the proliferation of mosquitoes: mainly, therefore , distribution of larvicides in public drains and communication to citizens for the correct management of private areas.Especially companies and managers of particularly critical areas such as construction sites, abandoned areas, storage yards, car parks, nurseries and other productive and commercial activities must be made aware which may also give rise to small collections of water and consequent outbreaks of larval development.The Municipalities are also asked to check the cleanliness conditions of the manhole covers and road drains, because they could be blocked by the mud left over after the outflow of the water: in this case the diffusion of the larvicidal product in the water would be reduced, and therefore the effectiveness would also decrease”.

“Additional actions – specifies the Region – are instead required in the areas of the municipal territory still affected by the floods, precisely to deal with the development of mosquitoes connected to the lack or reduced flow of water into the water network and to the persistence of stagnant waters”.

Region directions

“Always for the control of mosquito larvae – continues the note – in addition to strengthening the cleaning of manholes and drains, the indications are to pay attention to temporary deposits of waste stored awaiting the final treatment destination, because they can constitute potential sites reproduction of mosquitoes and other insects and animals, such as flies and mice.Although there is no evidence of circulation of pathogenic viruses that require the use of adult treatments – it is reiterated – the important presence, even outside the usual habitat, of Aedes mosquitoes that cause further discomfort to an already tried population justifies this type of intervention”.

“To effectively direct these treatments, attractive traps will be positioned to assess the population density of mosquitoes and act only where needed. The Municipalities – recommends the Region – are therefore invited to activate the companies holding contracts for the control and possible disinfestation, and to implement the additional interventions indicated”.