Truck Spraying

What You Need to Know About Truck Spraying

Is truck spraying safe for people with asthma?
  • Yes, when truck spraying is done correctly, it does not cause asthma attacks.
  • When applied according to label instructions, EPA-registered insecticides do not pose a risk to human health or the environment.
  • If people prefer to stay inside when spraying takes place they can, but it is not necessary.

Aedes aegypti and Ae. albopictus mosquitoes spread dengue viruses. Trucks fitted with special spray equipment can be used to treat areas with larvicides to kill mosquito larvae or with adulticides to kill adult mosquitoes. This process is called truck spraying. Truck spraying is used to:

  • Control and reduce the number of mosquitoes that can spread viruses. This can reduce your chances of getting sick.
  • Control and reduce the number of nuisance mosquitoes that bother people but do not spread viruses.
  • Treat entire neighborhoods in a short period of time compared to some other methods

Mosquito control districts or local government departments track both nuisance mosquitoes and mosquitoes that can spread viruses. Spraying larvicides and adulticides from a truck, according to label instructions, is one way to kill mosquito larvae or adult mosquitoes in an area. This is especially important when people in the community are getting sick from mosquito bites.

What are mosquito control trucks spraying?

A truck with a sprayer used to apply larvicides. Other similar types of sprayers are available and can be fit onto trucks or a trailer.

A truck with a sprayer used to apply larvicides. Other similar types of sprayers are available and can be fit onto trucks or a trailer.

Adulticiding: Mosquito control trucks spray very small amounts of insecticide into the air to kill flying mosquitoes. This spray is a fine mist.

Larviciding: Mosquito control trucks apply larvicides to kill mosquito larvae living in places that are hard to identify and difficult to reach.

When does spraying occur?

Adulticiding: Spraying occurs when mosquitoes are most active. Generally, local government agencies or mosquito control districts announce the dates and times of spraying in the local newspaper, on district websites and social media, through public service announcements, by telephone, or through door-to-door notices.

Larviciding: Applications are typically done in the early morning, evening, or at night if local weather conditions are right. Local government agencies or mosquito control districts will typically announce these missions through the same channels as for adulticiding.

How often do communities spray?

After spraying, local government departments or mosquito control districts will ideally track mosquito populations and treat an area again as necessary to reduce the chances of people getting bitten by mosquitoes.

Is the spray harmful to people, pets, animals, or the environment?

When applied by a licensed vector control professional who follows label instructions, truck spraying poses minimal risk to people, pets, animals, and the environment.

There is a possibility that spraying larvicides, like Bti, can cause eye irritation if a person is outside when spraying takes place.

What should I do during or after spraying?

Spraying is safe when applied by a licensed vector control professional who follows label instructions. If you prefer to stay inside and close windows and doors, you can, but it is not necessary. If you have any type of health problems after spraying, contact your doctor or healthcare provider. The spray does not harm pets, but you may choose to bring them inside when spraying occurs.

Information on insecticides and health

Is truck spraying safe for people with asthma?
  • Yes, when truck spraying is done correctly, it does not cause asthma attacks.
  • When applied according to label instructions, EPA-registered insecticides do not pose a risk to human health or the environment.
  • If people prefer to stay inside when spraying takes place they can, but it is not necessary.