Paramedics in Pinellas County request backup for help with mosquitoes

Posted at 5:04 PM, Jun 26, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-26 17:25:29-04

Sunstar Paramedics, the ambulance service in Pinellas County, has requested backup from the county's mosquito control to help fight a mosquito problem at one of their substations. 

The south substation located off 14th Circle North in St. Petersburg has become a hot zone for mosquitoes since the end of last week. 

John Peterson with Sunstar Paramedics says they've requested help from mosquito control because of the insects that swarm the paramedics at the end of their shift as they are washing their ambulances. 

There are around 100 employees at the location. 

Pinellas County will have a mosquito open house Friday, June 30, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at 4100 118th Ave. North, Clearwater.

The event will give people the chance to ask technicians one on one about your mosquito questions and tour the Mosquito Control facilities, including the helicopter, lab and mosquito fish tanks. 

Mosquito Control requests for citizens to help minimize the populations with some simple steps:

  • Empty water from any item that can hold water (examples: flower pots, garbage cans, recycling containers, wheelbarrows, aluminum cans, boat tarps, old tires and buckets).
  • Flush birdbaths and wading pools weekly.
  • Flush ornamental bromeliads or treat with BTI, a biological larvicide available at home stores.
  • Clean roof gutters, which can become clogged and hold water.
  • Change the water in outdoor pet dishes regularly.
  • Keep pools and spas chlorinated and filtered.
  • Stock ornamental ponds with mosquito-eating fish.
  • Cover rain barrels with screening.
  • Check for standing water under houses, near plumbing drains, under air conditioner drip areas, and around septic tanks and heat pumps.
  • Take steps to eliminate standing water, improve drainage and prevent future puddling. Technicians note that many local homes have items or areas that contain standing water – ideal breeding conditions for mosquitoes – contributing to the mosquito problem. Mosquito larvae only need a fraction of an inch of standing water to survive.