Sample site in Corinth tests positive for West Nile virus

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A mosquito pool has tested positive for the West Nile virus in Corinth for the first time this summer, but city leaders plan to wait for one more round of test results before deciding whether to conduct ground-spraying.

A sample site in Meadowview Park, a neighborhood park on the city’s west side, came up positive this week. Mayor Paul Ruggiere said the city has been regularly testing mosquito pools at sample sites in four locations on the east and west sides of the city this summer. This was the first time a sample came up positive.

The Corinth City Council held an emergency meeting Thursday night to decide its next steps, which could have included ground-spraying a one-mile radius around the park.

“That encompasses a lot of neighborhoods,” Ruggiere said.

The staff was prepared to spray that night, Ruggiere said, but the City Council decided it wanted more time to notify the public of the emerging threat. The council agreed to alert Corinth residents through Code Red, a reverse 911 system, and put out information through the police department and city websites about the findings.

Interim City Manager Jim Berzina said he agreed with the council’s caution.

“If they order the spraying, they want to give people time to move plants and animals indoors,” Berzina said.

Another round of test results is expected Wednesday. If results are again positive, the council will consider the matter again during its regular meeting Thursday, Ruggiere said.

Denton, which has one of the longest-running West Nile response plans in the region, generally doesn’t order ground-spraying with reports of positive mosquito pools. Instead, reports of more than one human case in an area would trigger such a response.

So far, only one human case of West Nile virus has been reported in Denton County this year, and that was in Denton, where the city has yet to record a positive mosquito pool. Currently at Risk Level 4, Denton has not ordered ground-spraying this year and continues to use larva control measures to battle the bugs.

According to county records, mosquito pools in Flower Mound, Lewisville and Highland Village have come up positive this summer, but no reported human cases of the virus have emerged in those cities.

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