Letter To The Editor
Slidell-Sentry News

Pesticides a concern in West Nile fight

Using pesticides to control West Nile virus carries with it a public health risk. Is anyone concerned about the overkill by the use of pesticides in St. Tammany?

Beyond Pesticides recommends to protect yourself from exposure to dangerous pesticides by closing windows, turning off air intake on window air conditioner units, taking toys and lawn furniture inside, removing shoes before entering homes to avoid tracking in residues, covering swimming pools, and avoid letting children play near or behind truck-mounted applicators.

Beyond Pesticides also recommends to consider leaving the area, in particular, for infants, children, pregnant women, the elderly, and individuals with compromised immune systems. Families cannot take these precautions until Parish President Kevin Davis decides to notify the public when and where pesticides will be applied.

The parish should also consider monitoring the public for adverse health effects by setting up a hotline for receiving reports, collecting hospital records, and requiring physicians to report incidents; and monitoring pesticide levels in the environment by using wipe tests of outdoor and indoor surfaces, checking air conditioner filters, evaluating water samples, and conducting soil and food residue tests from gardens and farms.

Lead the way Mr. Davis. Our health and safety is at stake.

Nancy Hirschfeld