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EEE

Pest extermination helicopter spraying pesticide while flying
bdavid32 / Adobe Stock

The state of Michigan has completed an aerial spraying program over nearly a half million acres in hopes of reducing the risk of a disease spread by mosquitoes.

The state has been dealing with another outbreak of Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE). Health officials say EEE is one of the most dangerous mosquito-borne diseases in the United States.  It's rare, but has a 33% fatality rate for people who get sick. 

horses in a barn or stable
Engin Akyurt / Unsplash

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced that it will be conducting aerial spraying to kill mosquitoes that spread the Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus. The state has confirmed 22 cases of EEE in horses since July 31, all of which were fatal.

According to the MDHHS, this is double the number of cases in horses as compared to 2019. This years' cases were spread across ten counties.

Mat Reding / Unsplash

State health officials are urging people in nine Michigan counties to postpone, reschedule, or cancel outdoor activities and events that take place at dusk or after dusk, due to a spike in Eastern Equine Encephilitis (EEE) infections in horses.

EEE is a mosquito-borne illness which primarily affects birds, but it can also be transmitted to other mammals, including horses and humans.

The counties where EEE infections have been found in horses are Barry, Clare, Isabella, Jackson, Kent, Mecosta, Montcalm, Newaygo, and Oakland.

A mosquito
flickr user trebol-a / http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

Last summer, Michigan saw its biggest recorded outbreak of Eastern Equine Encephalitis, or EEE. There were ten confirmed cases of the mosquito-borne virus in humans and five deaths. Could another EEE outbreak be on the horizon this year? Public health officials say it’s tough to tell.

Rebecca Thiele, WMUK

On April 9, Governor Gretchen Whitmer expanded her “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order in response to COVID-19. Some lawmakers are worried that the expansion of that order was too restrictive.

Joint Base San Antonio

Five people have now died of Eastern Equine Encephalytis or EEE in Michigan. The illness is spread by mosquitos. The latest victim lived in Cass County.

Lynn Sutfin is with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

She says people should not let down their guard, even though freezing temperatures are forecast for some parts of lower Michigan Monday night.  

A boat in Lake Huron near a sinkhole in Alpena, Michigan
David J. Ruck / Great Lakes Outreach Media

 

Today on Stateside, temperatures are supposed to drop across the state next week. What does that mean for the recent outbreak of Eastern equine encephalitis? Plus, a fitting cocktail for the summer-like days and chilly fall nights of early autumn. 

Tracy Samilton / Michigan Radio

Michigan is experiencing its worst-ever outbreak of a sometimes deadly illness spread by mosquitoes. 

It's called Eastern Equine Encephalitis, or EEE (Triple E) for short.   

Schools in West Michigan have been rescheduling a lot of outdoor sports these days to avoid dusk. That's when mosquitoes, possibly carrying EEE, are most active.