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Residents Press City To Take Action Against Queens Beach Pest Explosion

NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) -- Beach areas in Queens hit hard by Superstorm Sandy and still recovering are dealing with a new issue this summer.

As CBS2's Meg Baker reported, some residents are scratching their heads over a lack of action against what they call a pest explosion.

"Right around sunset they come out and overwhelm you," Hamilton Beach resident, Christopher Jones said.

"The mosquito problem down here is insane," Michael Hussey added.

Residents said the only way to combat mosquitoes is to stay inside. Bug spray and citronella candles don't work.

"Candles don't do anything," Jones said.

Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder walked the neighborhood on Bayview and Broadway with CBS2's Baker and explained that conditions were ripe for breeding.

"In southern Queens we are surrounded by Jamaica Bay, Sandy damage still not repaired, we are a target for mosquito breeding and West Nile," he said.

Goldfeder is pushing the Health Department to spray the area of Hamilton Beach, Howard Beach, and Lindenwood.

"Already reports West Nile is in Queens. Now is time to act before we have a dangerous situation on our hands," he said.

The Health Department said there is no need to spray yet.

"Spraying adulticide in populated areas before we have any evidence of West Nile Virus activity is neither appropriate, not will it help protect public health," the city said in a statement.

Some residents weren't buying it.

"I'm third generation in this neighborhood and usually every summer they do helicopter runs. Firefighters come around and tell you not to leave your home," Hussey said.

"They spray everywhere else. They should spray here too, we got water, weeds, they propagate," Jones said.

Last summer four people and 200 mosquito pools in Queens tested positive for West Nile. As of right now, the city has no plans to spray.

Marsh and standing water are known areas for mosquitoes to breed. You can report standing water on private property by calling 311.


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