Neighbors Complain About Mosquitoes In Abandoned Backyard Pool - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

7/10/2007-Big Sandy

Neighbors Complain About Mosquitoes In Abandoned Backyard Pool

After the recent rains there is standing water all over East Texas. Of course, that's the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. In Big Sandy neighbors are complaining about a pool at vacant home they say it's breeding mosquitoes.

"We spray them down trying to take care of them," said neighbor Linda Blackstone.

Just looking at Lauren's legs you see the bug spray wasn't enough

"She has ended up with most of the bites on her legs," said Linda.

She runs a day care in her own home Lauren and other children can't play in the backyard because of a problem right next door.

"We need some help. You don't see the kids out playing very much because there are so many mosquitoes in this area. I feel truly it is because of the swimming pool that is next door to us," said Linda.

The house foreclosed over five months ago.  Neighbors say the backyard pool has not been taken care of since

"It has pretty much impacted this whole area surrounding us. At this point there is not a whole lot we can do about it," said Linda.

For Linda and parents of the children she cares for it's been more than a frustration.  One local health department calls this sort of situation a violation of the health and safety code

"When you have abandoned property like this or for sale you get these problems," said Brenda J. Elrod, R.S., Environmental Health Director for Northeast Texas Public Health District.  "A man made body of water that is impounded holds water. Then if that is creating a mosquito problem it must be corrected."

Complaints had been filed with the City of Big Sandy. We're told the city determined the pool is a public health hazard. The owner, a bank in California, gave permission to do something about it. So two large containers of shock treatment and ten chlorine tablets were added.

They believe that will take care of the mosquitoes. This situation can be a good lesson for everyone. 

To get to the bottom of who is responsible for enforcing this code we contacted the city, several county officials, and several other county health departments before we got an answer. The bottom line: Your county health department is responsible, but if your county doesn't have a health department the responsibility falls to the hands of local law enforcement.

Danielle Capper, Reporting.


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