This is a precaution, a pro-active move, Avery said. The virus cannot be spread human to human, only by mosquitos. Gregory Pest Control will spray, and personnel next week will go door to door in western Laurens County with West Nile information. People with breathing problems are advised to avoid the spraying, which will be done late at night, Avery said.
Public Works Director Rob Russian said it is a credit to Avery that Laurens County has been aware for a year that this day might come. County Administrator Jon Caime said, "This is what government does - when things are in chaos, we are there."
This is not a health alert or an epidemic, Avery stressed. Federal and state laws prohibit authorities from being more specific about the confirmed case and where it happened. Greenwood County also will spray an area, separate from the Laurens County area from Waterloo to Ware Shoals.
SC DHEC has West Nile Virus info on its website. People in the affected area who know someone - a shut-in, elderly etc. - who might not get the word about the spraying to go and talk to them.
Any standing water should be eliminated - flower pots on porches, dog bowls outside - because mosquitos breed in stagnant water.
A news release said of the spraying, "The product being used is safe and meets all federal and state requirements and will be conducted either early in the morning just after sunrise (dawn) or in the evening. These are the times the mosquitos are most active.
"Additionally, DHEC will conduct mosquito trapping in the area to help determine the length of time needed to conduct spraying."