Mosquito-borne virus prompts Carver to ban outdoor activities between dusk & dawn

CARVER, Mass. — The Town of Carver is banning outdoor activities between dusk and dawn after another batch of mosquitoes collected in town has tested positive for the rare, but potentially deadly mosquito-borne virus Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE).

The ban goes into effect on Saturday and includes all town playgrounds, town beaches and the athletic fields at Carver Elementary School, Carver Middle High School and Shurtleff Park.

The ban will not include outdoor dining, which is currently being offered by three restaurants in town.

According to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, ten mosquito samples collected in Carver this month have tested positive for EEE. Five were collected on July 13 and the other five were collected on July 27.

As a result, the state has raised the EEE risk level in Carver from moderate to high. The state defines a high risk level as “conditions likely to lead to the infection of a person with EEE are occurring in your area.” The state suggests to prevent being bitten by an infected mosquito, adjust outdoor activity to avoid peak mosquito hours between dusk and dawn. Also, avoid overnight camping, particularity near freshwater swamps where EEE activity is most likely.

A EEE outbreak in Massachusetts last year infected a dozen people, six of whom died.

Anyone with questions should visit the town’s website or call the Board of Health at 508-866-3420.

Note: A previous version of this story said that Carver’s outdoor activities ban included outdoor dining in the town. This copy has been updated to show that outdoor dining is permitted in Carver despite the dawn to dusk ban.