Mayor: State of Emergency for Big Island Dengue Outbreak

Photo by Mathews

The Associated Press, February 9, 2015

HILO, Hawaii (AP) — Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi is declaring the island's ongoing dengue fever outbreak a state of emergency.

The proclamation signed Monday says there's imminent danger to the county.

The state Department of Health says there are 251 confirmed cases of the mosquito-borne virus across the island as of Monday. Of the confirmed cases, 227 are Hawaii Island residents and 24 are visitors.

Gov. David Ige says he'll issue a similar statewide proclamation if and when certain conditions are met, such as the outbreak spreading to other islands.

The illness is not endemic to Hawaii but can be spread by mosquitoes that bite infected travelers from endemic areas.

State and county officials continue trying to control mosquitoes and educate the public. People can reduce risks with mosquito repellant and long clothing.


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