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HUDSON, Fla. – FOX13 News – Septemeber 5, 2020
The Hudson library says it is temporarily closed due to a bed bug infestation. The library located at 8012 Library Road is expected to be closed for 1-2 weeks for fumigation treatment.
According to the library, staff discovered the bugs in an isolated area of the building two weeks ago. The county used a pest control contractor to begin isolated treatments, but the treatments were not successful, so it decided to close the building a do a full fumigation.
Health officials say bed bugs are not dangerous, but their bites can cause discomfort or an allergic reaction in some people.
Health officials advise anyone who visited the Hudson branch library in the past two weeks to monitor their home for the presence of bed bugs, and as a precaution, wash their bedding and clothing in hot water and dry them on the hottest dryer setting.
The coronavirus hasn’t stopped people in Florida from enjoying the outdoors.
A video recorded by a resident in Titusville, about 55 miles east of Orlando, shows dozens of cars parked side-by-side at Parrish Park on Easter, despite state orders for people to social distance in public.
“Over the past couple weekends, it’s been crazy,” Dan Rojas, who captured the footage, told WKMG this week. “When you’re in here, there’s two, three hundred people here in this small space.”
“I think that the park should be closed,” he added.
Yet it has been up to the counties to decide whether the Sunshine State’s popular beaches and parks will remain open for visitors.
Beaches in Brevard County – where Titusville is located — have been kept open, but with restrictions such as no sunbathing or gatherings of more than 10 people.
Despite all playgrounds being closed, “parks and trails remain open”, according to the county.
In response to Rojas’ video, Brevard County’s communications director, Don Walker, said the county is hesitant to further restrict recreational spaces.
“We want people to be able to go and hang outdoors and not be stuck in the house all day, but the problem is, we also are pushing the CDC recommendations of 6 feet social distancing, of avoiding mass gatherings,” he told WKMG.
As of Friday, the state of Florida has 23,340 confirmed coronavirus cases, with 668 deaths, statistics show. Johns Hopkins University says 192 of those cases and six of those deaths have been in Brevard County.
FOX NEWS | by Greg Norman |Video WKMG News 6 | April 17, 2020
FOX NEWS | by Madeline Farber | April 17, 2020
Heads up, consumers: When running the essential errand that is grocery shopping during the coronavirus epidemic in the U.S., there’s no need to wipe down the food packaging after you’ve returned home, according to a federal agency.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) attempted to quell Americans’ fears that their food packaging may be contaminated with the novel coronavirus, as recent studies have suggested it can live on certain surfaces between hours and days.
But in a statement posted to its website on Thursday, the FDA said: “We want to reassure consumers that there is currently no evidence of human or animal food or food packaging being associated with transmission of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.”
“This particular coronavirus causes respiratory illness and is spread from person-to-person, unlike foodborne gastrointestinal or GI viruses, such as norovirus and hepatitis A that often make people ill through contaminated food,” it added, noting there are currently no nationwide shortages of food, though some stores may be out of certain products. (Speaking of, what drives people to panic buy?)
The FDA also provided tips on how to protect yourself, other shoppers and store employees when buying essential items. For instance, it advised to:
- Prepare a grocery list in advance
- Wear a face mask or covering while in the store (this is in line with recently updated Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC] guidelines, and is now mandatory in hot spots like New York)
- Practice social distancing while shopping, make sure to stay at least 6 feet away from others
- Thoroughly wash your hands after returning home and again after putting the groceries away
“Again, there is no evidence of food packaging being associated with the transmission of COVID-19. However, if you wish, you can wipe down product packaging and allow it to air dry, as an extra precaution,” the FDA added.
FOX NEWS | by Greg Norman | April 10, 2020
A 15-year-old male from a remote indigenous tribe in the Amazon rainforest has tested positive for the coronavirus, Brazilian health officials said.
As of Friday, the teen from the Yanomami tribe remains in the ICU at a hospital in Roraima state, Insider.com reported, citing the O Globo newspaper.
Health Minister Luiz Henrique Mandetta was quoted saying that the case is “worrying” considering the tribe’s isolation from the outside world.
The Yanomami tribe, which inhabits the Venezuela-Brazil border region, is estimated to have around 22,000 members on the Brazilian side. They have been photographed in recent years from the air.
FOX NEWS | by Alexandria Hein | April 9, 2020
Dr. Peter Hotez discusses if it’s possible for mosquitoes to transfer coronavirus and if seasonality has anything to do with virus spread.
Mosquitoes are a common summer-time foe that are known vectors of the West Nile Virus, Zika, Chikungunya and several other diseases that sicken humans, but what about the novel coronavirus?
As the weather warms and many move their stay-at-home orders to their backyard, the question of whether you can contract COVID-19 through a mosquito bite continues to surface.
There are several types of human coronaviruses, including MERS and SARS, which each caused deadly outbreaks of their own. COVID-19, however, has never been seen before, and is caused by SARS-CoV-2. As a whole, coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are common in people and can affect different species of animals, but rarely can an animal coronavirus infect a human and then spread between people. However, such instances were seen with MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV, and has also now been documented with COVID-19, which is caused by SARS-CoV-2.
And recently, researchers confirmed that humans spread the virus to tigers at the Bronx Zoo. There have also been reports outside of the U.S. involving pets – particularly cats – becoming infected after close contact with contagious people.
Typically, the virus that causes COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly person-to-person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. However, it’s also possible to be spread when an infected person’s droplets are transferred to a surface, and an uninfected person then touches the contaminated surface and then transfers it to their face.
This raises the question then, of if a mosquito bites an infected person, and then lands on an uninfected person, can the disease be transferred?
“There are no reports of any spread of coronavirus to humans by mosquitoes,” Dr. Mary Schmidt, infectious disease and internal medicine specialist, told Fox News. “If this was a route of transmission, we would have seen it in the Middle East, where the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) caused by the coronavirus has been present for 6 years.”
Schmidt referenced a study that revealed that if mosquitoes were fed a blood meal of the coronavirus MERS, it was detected for up to one day in the insect. However, for this to become a threat to humans, a series of particular events would need to occur.
“In order for this to happen in real life, the mosquitoes would have to acquire the virus during feeding, the virus then undergoes replication in the gut tissue, disseminates to the secondary sites of replication, including the salivary glands, and is ultimately released into the arthropod’s salivary secretions, where it may be inoculated into the skin and cutaneous vasculature of the host (human) during subsequent feeding,” Schmidt said.
Given those findings, Schmidt said that mosquitoes should continue to be monitored. The American Mosquito Control Association (AMCA) has also said that it will continue to monitor the situation in conjunction with public health officials.
In early March, the World Health Organization (WHO) said there has been no information nor evidence to suggest that COVID-19 can be transmitted by mosquitoes.
Miami Herald Editorial Board | March 3, 2020
Anyone who remembers Greater Miami as Ground Zero for HIV infection, Zika, dengue — you name it — won’t be shocked if, or when, coronavirus crosses the county line, lands at the airport or cruises into the port.
The “when” might be here. However, a Miami woman told by doctors at Jackson Memorial Hospital that she “likely” has COVID-19 — coronavirus — could not get the diagnosis confirmed. As first reported by Jim DeFede at miami.cbslocal.com, state and federal would not conduct the testing needed to confirm it.
This is not to way to allay public fears of the contagion, contain it and treat those who need it as quickly as possible. Turns out, state health officials are following ridiculously narrow federal guidelines to test a very small pool of people who have been to China or who are critically ill.
We urge Gov. Ron DeSantis, Florida’s Republican governor who has President Trump’s ear, along with that of Vice President Pence — the nation’s putative coronavirus czar — to ditch the political spin they’ve swirled around this health emergency and get serious about saving lives. Pence has inspired little confidence so far in his ability to handle this potential pandemic. Here’s his chance to prove otherwise.
In Florida, other hard-learned lessons of disasters past, however, appear to have taken hold. DeSantis spoke transparently and with authority Monday in confirming two cases of coronavirus in the state. The governor briefed the public in Tampa after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed two “presumptive positive” cases of the virus: One is a man in Manatee County; the second is a woman in Hillsborough County. A third case was reported on Tuesday.
Monday, the state’s surgeon general, Dr. Scott Rivkees, even copped to the 24-hour delay between learning the CDC’s preliminary findings and the announcement to the public, though his explanation — that the patients were being monitored during that time — was fuzzy and not reassuring.
ALERT PUBLIC EARLY
Given the virus’ spread — and its potential to be fatal — the state should err on the side of flagging cases to the public sooner rather than later to better contain the contagion. New cases are a given as Florida expands testing.
South Florida and — Miami, in particular — must be especially vigilant. It is a major point of entry by land, sea and air. Coronavirus has had a wide-ranging journey — from Asia to Europe to Africa to the Americas, including the Dominican Republic, where an Italian national was confirmed to harbor the virus. A smattering of other cases have been confirmed in other Caribbean countries.
As troubling as the discovery of coronavirus is in Florida counties to the north, the Caribbean is truly our “neighborhood” in South Florida. The familial links of strong; so is the lure for tourists. Both could affect us here.
This community will have to be prepared to protect itself, while likely coming to the aid of compatriots among the Caribbean to help check the threat and manage the aftermath. It will be in the entire region’s best interest.
SAFETY AT ULTRA
Locally, commend Miami Mayor Francis Suarez for requesting that the organizers of the Ultra Music Festival this month deliver a plan for protecting the thousands of attendees who will descend upon Bayfront Park downtown for the three-day celebration of electronic music.
While he’s at it, Suarez also needs to make sure that the Calle Ocho festival and Carnavale have such plans in place, too.
Good to see, too, is Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez taking on the creation of a plan to shield the elderly, one of the most vulnerable populations. The deaths in a stiflingly hot nursing home in Broward County after it lost electricity during Hurrincane Irma still haunt the South Florida community.
Many Floridians have shaken their heads over the years at late evacuation calls as hurricanes bore down, at aerial spraying to kill potentially Zika-carrying mosquitoes — without knowing exactly where it was going to occur — at closed or chaotic storm shelters.
Florida could be on its way to getting its response to this potential coronavirus pandemic right.
It has to.
“I probably do five to 10 rideshare cars per week,” Don Brooks, owner of Doffdon Pest Control, told Dallas news station WAA. “Drivers either see bedbugs, someone complained, or they were suspicious of a customer and just want to make sure.”
One method Brooks uses involves heating a tent to nearly 150 degrees. Drivers usually leave their cars in the tent for a few hours at a cost of $250, he said, though, he also offers a cheaper solution with liquid pesticides.
On a national level, the average cost estimate for bedbug extermination ranges between $320 and $400, according to a recent report from Thumbtack, an online local marketplace for professional services.
“If you feel suspicious, just throw your clothes in the dryer for 50 minutes on high heat. Then it’s best to hop in the shower,” Brooks said.
Dallas-Forth Worth is one of the most bedbug-infested cities in the nation, according to Terminex. Only New York City and Philadelphia have topped the Texas city’s high numbers.
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Staten Islanders residing in developments operated by the New York City Housing Authority filed nearly 2,000 bedbug and roach complaints in the first nine months of last year.
NYCHA data obtained by the Legal Aid Society shows nearly 60,000 such complaints across the city in the same time period. On average, those complaints were closed within 10 days — something the Legal Aid Society’s Attorney-In-Charge of the Civil Law Reform Unit Judith Goldiner pointed to as good news.
To continue addressing the issue and others facing NYCHA tenants, Goldiner called for more funding for the authority, particularly on the state level.
Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R-East Shore/South Brooklyn) has advocated for tenants with both city and federal officials. In March, she was accompanied by the regional director for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Lynn Patton, for a tour of the New Lane Area and South Beach NYCHA developments.
“In the 2018-2019 State Budget, we invested $250 million to improve conditions at NYCHA including mold, lead, bug infestation,” Malliotakis wrote in an email Monday. “The real question is what is NYCHA doing with the money because we can’t keep throwing more money into a blackhole.”
State Sen. Diane Savino (D-North Shore/Brooklyn) echoed Malliotakis’ concerns about NYCHA management. Neither elected official said whether they would heed the call for more state funding to the housing authority.
“My colleagues and I, year after year, led the charge for increased funding for NYCHA,” Savino said. “This is a continuous management problem — just like with mold and faulty pipes. NYCHA needs to take these quality of life and health issues more seriously.”
Assemblyman Michael Cusick (D-Mid-Island) said he believes the insect infestations are “emblematic of decades-old challenges facing the housing complexes.”
“While I am encouraged that NYCHA has decreased the time it takes to address these infestations, I will continue to support increased funding and accountability for NYCHA in Albany,” he said.
Up until Sept. 4, Staten Islanders residing in NYCHA developments filed 1,839 complaints, and had average wait times of about eight days. Of those complaints, 143 were for bedbugs, according to the data.
Both the Cassidy-Lafayette and South Beach NYCHA developments had high levels of bedbug complaints. Of the 119 complaints at Cassidy-Lafayette, 40 were for bedbugs. Of the 188 complaints at South Beach, 35 were for bedbugs.
The remainder of the borough’s NYCHA developments had the following numbers:
- Berry — 169 complaints, 9 for bedbugs
- Mariners Harbor — 176 complaints, 11 for bedbugs
- New Lane Area — 102 complaints, 11 for bedbugs
- Richmond Terrace — 187 complaints, one for bedbugs
- Todt Hill — 189 complaints, 10 for bedbugs
- West Brighton I & II — 205 complaints, 11 for bedbugs
State Sen. Andrew Lanza (R-Staten Island) said he would consider increased state funding, but that NYCHA would first need to prove that management of its facilities is “on the right track.”
A NYCHA spokeswoman said their internal numbers show improvements to closed bedbug and roach work orders, and the time it takes to close bedbug orders, something she attributed to its new Integrated Pest Management system.
However, that system has also contributed to the increased wait time for roach complaints. Visits take longer, but result in fewer complaints due to increased prevention efforts, according to NYCHA.
Instead of simply spraying for roaches, exterminators are taking more care at developments by looking for holes, caulking and vacuuming. Bedbug wait times were not affected by these changes, because NYCHA treats them and rats as emergencies.
“NYCHA is working closely with the Federal Monitor on Integrated Pest Management (IPM) techniques and a Pest Action Plan, as per the January 2019 agreement,” NYCHA spokeswoman Rochel Leah Goldblatt said.
In January 2019, the city reached a deal with HUD that allowed the department to install a monitor overseeing NYCHA’s management and required the city to make an additional investment of $2 billion over five years.
City estimates have put NYCHA’s capital need just over $30 billion.
Assemblyman Charles Fall (D-North Shore) said financial support is needed from all levels of government.
“No one wants their mother, brother, or child living in the horrendous conditions that are described by NYCHA residents; nor should we as elected officials want this for our constituents,” Fall said.
“Furthermore, we must ensure that NYCHA is held accountable; meaning all funds must be allocated sensibly and utilized to dramatically transform the shameful living conditions residents continue to describe.”
PATCH | January 13, 2020 | by Paul Scicchitano
The rankings were based on metro areas where Orkin performed the most bed bug treatments from Dec. 1, 2018, to Nov. 30, 2019. Both residential and commercial treatments were included.
For the last three years, Baltimore was the No. 1 city in the nation for bed bugs; but its nearby neighbor, Washington, D.C., took the top spot in 2020.
Here are the top 10 cities overall:
- Washington, D.C.
- Los Angeles
- Columbus, Ohio
- New York
“While bed bugs have not been found to transmit any diseases to humans, they can be an elusive threat to households,” said Chelle Hartzer, an Orkin entomologist who was referenced in a press release for the rankings. “They are excellent hitchhikers, and they reproduce quickly, which make it nearly impossible to prevent bed bugs.”
A description for the blood-sucking bugs on the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website sounds like something from a Stephen King novel: “parasitic insects that feed solely on the blood of people and animals while they sleep.”
The reddish-brown bugs are typically 4 to 5 millimeters in length, or the size of Abraham Lincoln’s head on a penny. The creatures are also known for multiplying incredibly quickly, as females can deposit one to five eggs a day in the right conditions.
Orkin provides a range of tips to prevent bed bugs from inhabiting your home.
- Inspect your home for signs of bed bugs regularly. Check the places where bed bugs hide during the day, including mattress tags and seams, and behind baseboards, headboards, electrical outlets and picture frames.
- Decrease clutter around your home to make it easier to spot bed bugs on your own or during professional inspections.
- Inspect your residence regularly — when you move in, after a trip, when a service worker visits or after guests stay overnight.
- Examine all secondhand furniture before bringing it inside your home. This is a common way for bed bugs to be introduced into homes.
- Wash and dry your bed linens often, using the hottest temperature allowed for the fabric.