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Prevent Exposure to Ticks and Mosquitoes on Job Sites

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

It’s that time of year again when we begin transitioning from a wet spring to a humid summer. These conditions provide the perfect breeding ground for two small but dangerous organisms – ticks and mosquitoes. If you are working outside near wooded or tall grass areas, or near standing water, you are working where ticks and mosquitoes thrive. Most of us will undoubtedly be exposed over the coming months, whether away from work on a camping trip, or on a job site in this type of environment. Either way, you’ll need to take precautions this spring and summer. So, why is this a concern?

Ticks can transmit diseases such as Lyme Disease and mosquitoes are known to transmit West Nile Virus, Encephalitis and Dengue Fever. Symptoms from exposure range from a rash and flu-like symptoms, to joint pain, neurological disorders and even death. According to the Department of Health Services, Lyme disease cases are on the rise, and state health officials are urging people to take precautions against tick bites as warm weather sets in. Mosquito-borne diseases tend to fluctuate from year to year based on weather conditions, but suffice it to say they will be noticeable at some point during the next few months. Two of the most reliable products for preventing exposure to ticks and mosquitoes are Permethrin and DEET.

What’s the Difference?
Permethrin
    • An insecticide that kills ticks and mosquitoes.
    • Is applied to clothing, not the skin.
    • Treated clothing is effective from days to weeks

 DEET
    • Repels mosquitoes.
    • Can be applied to clothing or skin.
    • Treated skin is effective for hours.

Permethrin + DEET = Maximum Protection
Studies show that the combination of DEET on exposed skin and permethrin on clothing is extremely effective at preventing insect bites and stings. What should I do on the Construction Site?

    • Eliminate sources of standing water
    • Tuck your pants in your socks and shirt in your pants
    • Wear a hat
    • Check skin and clothing regularly for ticks
    • Keep mosquito spray with DEET on hand at your job site
    • Contact the Safety Department for information on purchasing Permethrin spray or clothing that has been pre-treated with Permethrin.

Tick Removal
The best method of removing ticks is to simply pull the tick out using a tweezers as close to the skin as possible. Avoid twisting and crushing the body of the tick, or removing the head from the body. Finally, clean the area with soap and water. The risk of infection increases with time, and infection is unlikely if the tick is attached for less than 24 hours. Avoid folk remedies such as petroleum jelly, nail polish remover, or burning matches for tick removal as they tend to be ineffective, offer no advantages in preventing the transfer of disease, and may increase the risks of transmission or infection.

Discover more about how Ahern is continually implementing methods for improving the safety of our team, as well as yours.

Source: Antea Group

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