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Chemical Fog to Spray San Jose

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SAN JOSE, Calif. (KCBS)- Santa Clara County plans to spray for disease-carrying mosquitoes in as a precautionary measure against West Nile virus, but the plan is being met with opposition from some residents.

One woman who lives in the West San Jose area scheduled to be fogged Tuesday evening says not enough is known about the effect the insecticide will have on people.

 “The limited tests or whatever they’ve done seems like a safe thing to do, but next month or next week, we could find that there are far-reaching implications or consequences that were not predicted,” said the resident.

The chemical fog contains Pyrethrin, which is found in household insecticides and pet sprays, and Santa Clara County officials maintain that it’s safe.

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Meliha, whose elderly mother lives between 880 and Saratoga Ave, which county officials have determined is at risk to West Nile due to the large number of infected birds found here, says she thinks it’s bad for people with chronic illnesses, especially asthma. 

Some studies show excessive exposure can trigger asthma, headaches, nausea and convulsions.

Russ Parmen, acting District Manager of Vector Control, says the fogging should not hurt humans, due to the small amount of the active chemical being used.

“We’re only putting out one fluid ounce per acre,” said Parmen.

He suggests that anyone who still has concerns should close their windows Tuesday night and not run their air conditioners.

Concerned residents went to the Asian Americans for Community Involvement center on Friday to voice their opposition to the plan.

Many say the County Vector control district should have asked for input before making a plan to spray rather than afterward.

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