Springfield residents concerned drainage ditch behind homes creates mosquito ‘breeding ground’

Published: Tuesday, May 21, 2019 @ 9:56 PM

A drainage ditch behind a set of houses on Memorial Drive in Springfield has some residents concerned about it becoming a 'mosquito breeding ground' in the coming summer months.

A Springfield man said he’s frustrated about a swampy mess behind his home.

But it’s not just how it looks.

“This is not just a puddle here, a puddle there,” Scott Vogel said.

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Neighbors said when it rains, water flows off nearby roads into a drainage pit behind their houses on Memorial Drive. Then it just sits there.

Vogel said all the bugs have made sitting on his porch unpleasant, and that he’s heard the same thing from his neighbors. 

After an unpleasant evening Vogel said he called the health department, and News Center 7.  That was Monday.

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“Our primary concern is West Nile virus,” Vogel said. “Mosquitoes, I mean, you guys report all the time: West Nile virus, standing water. This never gets a chance to really dry up. Even at its best it’s always soggy down there. ...

“It’s a concern because it’s a breeding ground.”

What is West Nile virus?

West Nile virus is the leading cause of mosquito-borne disease in the U.S., spread to people by the bite of an infected mosquito. Cases occur during mosquito season, which starts in the summer and continues through fall. There are no vaccines or medications. Most people infected do not feel sick. About 1 in 5 develop a fever and other symptoms; 1 out of 150 develop a serious, sometimes fatal, illness. Reduce your risk of WNV by using insect repellent and wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants to prevent mosquito bites. — Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

A Springfield city spokesperson did not have specific knowledge about the drainage pit, but said the city does install them in some places as a safety measure to get run-off rainwater off roads. 

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As for Vogel: “I don’t care who’s responsible. I’d like to find the solution because it’s been going on way too long.”

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