The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is closing two of the campgrounds at Pachaug State Forest in Voluntown over concerns after Eastern Equine Encephalitis was detected in mosquitoes that the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station trapped.
DEEP is closing the Mt. Misery campground and the nearby Horse Camp, also known as the Frog Hollow Horse Camp, and said the decision was made in consultation with the CAES and the Department of Public Health. The campgrounds are closed until further notice.
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Campers say state officials told them they’ll compensate their booking camping payments.
What You Need to Know About Eastern Equine Encephalitis
Eastern equine encephalitis virus is also spread through bites from infected mosquitoes and the state Department of Health reports EEEV is rare in the United States with an average of seven cases reported each year. No vaccine is vailable.
Approximately one third of people who become sick from EEE will die from the illness, according to the state Department of Health. They urge that early treatment can lower the risk of complications and death.
The best prevention is to avoid getting bitten. Find tips here.
"It will be the usual things, avoid having standing water on your property because those of breeding grounds for mosquitos," Director of Connecticut Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Lab Dr. Joan Smyth said.
Dr. Smyth says horses are more susceptible to the virus, and encourages horse owners to get the animals vaccinated.
“It’s really from August onward that we see this as a problem with horses and humans and so on. We’re entering the very high risk period now," Dr. Smyth said.