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    Vision: A Healthy Texas

    Mission: To improve health and well-being in Texas
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    Texas 211

DSHS Offers Health-Related Precautions Following Hurricane Alex

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News Release
July 1, 2010

Health officials are offering the following health-related precautions for people in areas where heavy rains may have occurred as a result of Hurricane Alex.

Mosquitoes

  • Standing water after floods is a breeding place for mosquitoes. Drain all standing water and empty water from outdoor items such as old tires, cans and flower pot bases.
  • Protect yourself with an insect repellent that contains DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535. Always follow label directions.
  • Make sure door, porch and window screens are in good condition.

Heat

  • Drink plenty of fluids while working outside.
  • Take frequent breaks to conserve energy and avoid heat stress.
  • People with heart conditions and other illnesses should avoid strenuous exertion.
  • At the first signs of heat illness – dizziness, heavy sweating, nausea, headaches, muscle cramps – move to a cooler location, rest and slowly drink a cool liquid. Seek medical attention immediately if conditions do not approve.

Environmental Hazards

  • Snakes, bats and other wildlife may seek shelter in trees, homes and vehicles. They are often injured in heavy rains and winds. Do not handle any wildlife.
  • Seek immediate treatment if bitten or injured by an animal. Beware of displaced pets.

Hygiene and Injuries

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water during cleanup, especially before handling food.
  • Wear shoes in post-flood areas to reduce the chances of punctures or cuts from nails and other sharp contaminated objects.
  • Persons with puncture wounds or cuts exposed to flood water could be at risk of contracting tetanus and may need to have a tetanus shot to prevent infection.
  • Do not allow children to play in or near flood water or storm drains.

Lack of Electricity

  • Those without electricity should use extreme caution with generators and other carbon monoxide producing devices.
  • To prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, do not burn charcoal or use gasoline-powered generators or pumps indoors.

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(News Media Contact: Carrie Williams, DSHS Acting Press Officer, 512-458-7119.)

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Last updated December 27, 2013