Spring is in the air, when cleaning take care

Spring and summer are great times to clean up barns and sheds, but some precautions should be taken so exposure to any accumulations

Spring and summer are great times to clean up barns and sheds, but some precautions should be taken so exposure to any accumulations of mouse droppings in those enclosed areas does not result in respiratory problems.

Taking precautions to avoid hantavirus infection is something that farmers should practice as a general rule. The main risk of infection, according to Alberta Health information, comes from being exposed to accumulations of mouse droppings in enclosed areas where mice have overwintered. Hantavirus is passed to humans when they breathe in airborne particles released from the droppings, fresh urine and nesting material of infected rodents.

The most effective precaution against infection is to keep rodents out of homes and work areas, and immediately trap any that get in. However, when entering an enclosed space where mice may have been nesting, take the necessary precautions:

• ventilate enclosed areas before cleaning by opening doors and windows for at least 30 minutes – stay out of the area while it airs out

• when you begin cleaning, disturb any mouse droppings and nesting material as little as possible

• wear rubber gloves to handle the droppings, and rinse the gloves in disinfectant (such as bleach solution or soap and water) before taking them off

• soak droppings with disinfectant (1.5 cups bleach to one gallon water) before you mop them up or pick up with a paper towel

• place droppings and nesting material in a sealed bag and bury it, or put it out for removal in garbage cans with tight-fitting lids

• do not sweep or use a vacuum cleaner to remove droppings in an enclosed space

• people who are likely to be exposed to high levels of contamination or in spaces with little ventilation should wear masks

The only confirmed carrier of the hantavirus in Alberta is the deer mouse. The incidence of the hantavirus and the risk it poses to the public is low, but when one considers its potential severity, it is recommended to keep any risk to a minimum and take precautions to avoid hantavirus infection. Preventing hantavirus is easy when using a few simple precautions.

Submitted

Just Posted

Former Ponoka CAO paid out $90,000 in settlement

The matter has been completed with three cheques sent out in town vs CAO claim

Ponoka town council pay to rise 15% on non-taxable portion in 2019

Council unanimously passes pay hike to make up for income tax change

Ponoka County dumps rezoning application by recycling operation

Third time no charm for Morningside property attempt to rezone for business use

Fan support was strong at Ponoka high school basketball games

Ponoka Secondary Campus Broncs boys and girls ended up defeating the St. Augustine Kings and Queens

Ponoka business places in top three of regional marketing challenge

Torch and Teal owner pleasantly surprised with the recognition

VIDEO: Ex-NASA engineer pranks mail thieves with glitter bomb trap

Package thefts are common this time of year, but YouTuber Mark Rober used his engineering skills

CSIS collected info on peaceful groups, but only in pursuit of threats: watchdog

Security Intelligence Review Committee says fears unjustified after reviewing evidence, testimony

Canada ranks 16th on annual gender gap list

This is the second year Canada has placed 16th in the World Economic Forum’s list

Privacy watchdog says legal cannabis buyers should use cash, not credit

Some countries could bar entry to individuals if they know they have purchased cannabis

‘A start:’ Alberta critical of Ottawa’s $1.6B package for ailing energy sector

A further $150 million is to be used for clean growth and infrastructure projects

Two-year-old attacked by cougar near Mission, B.C.

Boy not seriously injured in incident on Monday afternoon

Trump signs order to create US Space Command

President Donald Trump signs an executive order to create a U.S. Space Command.

Groups preparing new pipeline legal challenge, argue government’s mind made up

A Vancouver-based environment charity is readying itself to go back to court if the federal government reapproves the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

Notorious Toronto triple killer gets third consecutive life sentence

Dellen Millard gets third consecutive life sentence for father’s death.

Most Read