News-Sun photo by KATARA SIMMONS Stacks of tires at Florida Tire Terminal on Faegin Avenue in Avon Park are breeding grounds for mosquitoes, nearby residents claim.
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published: Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Tire stacks cause mosquito swarms, AP residents say
By CHRISTOPHER TUFFLEY
AVON PARK -- Mosquitoes were on the agenda Monday night as members of the city council listened to complaints about a possible infestation on Tulane Circle near the Florida Tire Terminal on Faegin Avenue.
Charles Devlin raised the issue with the council, and City Councilor Terry Heston, a neighbor of Devlin's, said he had the same problem.
No one from Florida Tire Terminal was at the meeting.
As a result of Devlin's original complaint, city manager Julian Deleon told the council, the police department conducted two mosquito infestation studies in the neighborhood.
In a memo to Deleon dated Aug. 23, APPD Commander Jason Lister reported, "The results of the study clearly documented that there was an increased amount of mosquito activity in the area of Florida Tire Terminal on Faegin Avenue."
The study consisted of four identical mosquito collection appliances, deployed at the same time at Tulane Circle on the lake side of the road; Wilhite Street at the intersection of South Faegin Avenue; West Bell Street near the railroad crossing; and the police department.
Lister says code enforcement visits were made to the tire terminal site and the findings discussed.
"Staff at Florida Tire Terminal was able to produce records which showed routine spraying of the outdoor tires," Lister told Deleon.
It is the usefulness of the source control applied by Florida Tire Terminal that is part of the problem, Devlin and Heston said Monday.
Deleon explained that the city has a mosquito fogging program. The insecticide is contact control system, meaning mosquitoes are killed when they fly into the fog. The application, however, has no effect on larvae in standing water. Killing larvae requires source control.
"The problem with the spraying," Heston said, "is that the tires are stacked up high, two stories in places." No one can get high enough up in the air, he said, to get the chemical spray inside the column of tires to the standing water.
There were also concerns over the long term consequences of spraying chemicals. Would it affect the ground water?
The men who do the spraying wear "those all white suits that are completely enclosed," Devlin said. "That can't be good."
Devlin told the council that "Florida Tire Terminal is a reputable business. We want them to stay in the community." At the same time, the company has grown and expanded. It now has tens of thousands of tires on its property, he said. The business is longer a good fit in the otherwise residential neighborhood.
Mosquitoes are the major health hazard concern, Devlin said, but added he had other concerns as well. Noise early Saturday morning, for example; using Faegin Avenue as an extension of the company's work yard; and semi trucks running over private yards.
Devlin asked if the city had more suited industrial property available it could offer in trade to the company -- maybe something out by the airport.
City attorney Gerald Buhr warned the council that in order to take any action, code enforcement would have to provide definitive evidence Florida Tire Terminal was the source of the increased mosquito problem in Tulane Circle area, which wouldn't necessarily be easy to prove.
He said the Department of Environmental Protection already regulates mosquito infestation issues, like how high tires may be stacked.
Then he stopped the discussion. "I'm uncomfortable talking too much about this, because they're not here to defend themselves," Buhr said.
Another study will be done in the near future. "If the data collected is consistent with the previous data, code enforcement will start the compliance process by utilizing City of Avon Park Nuisance Ordinance 15-11," Lister said.
The News-Sun was told on Tuesday morning by Florida Tire Terminal staff that owner Bob Reisig is out of town until Monday and unavailable for comment.
Not blind (by: Lex - 8/31/2012)
Regardless of who got there first, if its a health hazard or even a quality of life issue, then measures should be taken to eliminate the problem.
Problem Solved (by: Blindman - 8/31/2012)
Instead of picking up shop and moooooving..... why don't they just find an economical source of plastic barrels like (Domer Drums), cut them in half and place them over the top tire of each stack to keep the rain and insects away. There has to be a way.
Skeeters on Tulane (by: Skeeter Hater - 8/30/2012)
That's what one block away from Tulane? This is clearly the fact that we have had allot of rain and Skeeters will breed in any amount of water they can find. I'm not stateing its not the Tire Termanal. But it would need to be sprayed more often with the increase of rain. We may simpley need to get some one to go out and look into the standing water and see if the truck that sprays is effective. We dont need a viral out break in Avon Park/
Florida Tire Terminal (by: Blindman - 8/30/2012)
This company has been there for years. Please!
Skeeters (by: ASDFGHJKLZXCVBNM - 8/30/2012)
Devlin is probably right about the skeeters. I am sure he will get his way since he is one of the "who's who" in Avon Park.
Mosquito Police? (by: BUZZZZZZ - 8/29/2012)
From police commander to mosquito patrol? What a shame for the city of avon park. What a waste of talent and experience. Commander, my advise, find a real police job somewhere else, unless you like what you are doing.
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