Two areas of 150 meters are involved. The first starts at the intersection of Via Toulouse and Rue Albert IVerse. The second is located at the crossroads of Cours de la Somme and Rue Tillet. So the route was pre-determined using a map and circumference calculated according to the mosquito’s flight range. “We spread the insecticide and create a cloud of product. We use this cloud so we don’t over-treat,” explains Lucy.
The husband begins their operation on foot. An oxygen suit and mask covers the body and face of mosquito hunters. Armed with a noisy thermal fogger worthy of the best sci-fi movie, they plan the Ars Park. The device used leaves little chance for mosquitoes. After heating to 1000 degrees, it releases an intense chemical in the form of vapor. “We spread the tiny droplets that settle into the vegetation and young foliage to reach the mosquitoes,” says Renaud.
Once this first area is done, the pair travels around the neighborhood in a pickup truck. A machine was installed at the back of the car. Two metal eyelets disperse the mosquito repellent. “The cloud you spread can spread up to 50 metres,” says Lucy. Deltamethrin is sprayed during the procedure. This chemical agent from the pyrethroid family is often used in insecticides. Its great toxicity to animals, especially bees, still requires precautionary measures. “We have a regulated dose. We use one gram of the product per hectare to avoid touching the largest insects”, assures Renaud.
“We have a regulated dose. We use one gram of product per hectare to avoid touching the largest insects”
The housing that characterizes the processed sector is directly concerned with the risks associated with the products. Two days prior to the intervention, the Regional Health Agency (ARS) of New Aquitaine distributed leaflets. Residents were asked to avoid exposure to spray materials, particularly by closing windows overlooking the public road. In fact, the high temperatures discouraged this effort. No problem, according to Raynaud: “Inhalation is not necessarily dangerous in itself. Repeated exposure can be a problem, which is why we wear coats.”
Reply to a report
The operation was carried out on Monday 13 June at the request of the Army of Stabilization in Nouvelles-Aquitaine. A person infected with the arbovirus (dengue, chikungunya or Zika) frequented the neighborhood. These illnesses are reported directly to the public body which then leads to action which must be completed within 72 hours. A survey is first conducted in the areas frequented by the patient to find tiger mosquitoes, which are likely carriers of the virus, and then a mosquito control operation is launched.
People infected with arthropod-borne viruses in the area were not bitten. These diseases are often imported into mainland France by travelers carrying the virus. If a tiger mosquito bites a sick person, it can transmit the virus by biting other individuals, resulting in an epidemic. This is the chain of transmission that Renault and Lucy must stop. “We set traps before and after the operation to see how effective the spray was. »
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