West Nile spraying comes to Riverdale


Summer is coming to a close, but the threat from the mosquito-borne illness West Nile virus is still quite potent. 

To help combat that, residents in North Riverdale and Van Cortlandt Village could see slow-moving trucks spraying pesticide toward wooded areas on Tuesday, Sept. 5.

The spraying is expected to start at 9 p.m., and run through 6 a.m., according to the city's health department. North Riverdale and Van Cortlandt Village were among dozens of areas in the Bronx selected for the spraying Tuesday because those areas are considered higher risk for West Nile.

The pesticide itself is mostly safe, officials said, using low concentrations in the spray that poses no significant risks to human health. However, those who might be near the pesticides should be careful.

• Whenever possible, stay indoors during spraying. People with asthma or other respiratory conditions are encouraged to stay inside since direct exposure could worsen those conditions.

• Air-conditioners may remain on. However, those wishing to reduce the possibility of indoor exposure to pesticides should set the vent to a closed position, or choose the re-circulate function.

• Remove children's toys, outdoor equipment and clothes from outdoor areas during spraying. If outdoor equipment and tours are exposed to pesticides, wash them with soap and water before using again.

• Wash skin and clothing exposed to pesticides with soap and water. Always wash produce thoroughly with water before cooking or eating.

Of course, the most effective way to control mosquitoes is to eliminate any standing water, health officials said. Those wishing to report standing water can call 311, or visit

Most people who contract West Nile never feel any symptoms, but those who do could experience fever, headaches, fatigue and muscle pain. A few cases could also cause neurological problems, primarily encephalitis or meningitis, although both are rare.