A low-flying Chatham County Mosquito Control plane sparked accusations of intimidation and controversy by some leaders of street protests in West Savannah, who said they were deliberately sprayed with the chemicals.
But Chatham County responds with records indicating the flight was pre-planned and the community was notified.
"Because of positive testing for West Nile Virus in the West Savannah area Chatham County Mosquito Control has been actively treating that area," a spokesman says. "Previous treatments have taken place on August 27th, September 3rd, September 11th, and September 18th with a scheduled flight for last night. Notifications of these flights are sent to all municipalities, the Chatham County Sheriff’s Office, Savannah Airport Police and to SCMPD."
Mosquito Control helicopter began its scheduled treatment, "unaware that there was a public gathering in the Augusta Avenue area, and some of the product was released in the general area," the spokesman says.
"SCMPD officers then contacted the pilot to inform him of the gathering and the pilot pulled from the area."
The spray used by Chatham County Mosquito Control can cause some irritation to the eyes and skin. This product is sprayed in an amount of 0.6 ounces per acre.
For those that questions or concerns regarding the Chatham County Mosquito Control spraying operations should contact them at 790-2340 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.