Is the cure worse than the disease?

By | August 26, 2003

Larimer County health officials have decided to spray insecticide over cities from an airplane to try to kill the mosquitoes which are spreading West Nile disease. This seems like a very drastic action. Eastern Loveland, Ft. Collins and Wellington will end up in the battle zone; residents in that area will end up breathing in these insecticides.

The problem is, experts aren’t completely sure that the insecticide won’t harm humans. Alice Guthrie from the City of Boulder said, “…these are toxic chemicals. They kill mosquitoes. They kill a lot of non-targets. We are very concerned about the issues and the human health issue as well.”

Boulder county is taking a less-drastic approach. Boulder will spray, but from the ground, using hand sprayers. This should reduce human contact with the insecticide.

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