Portsmouth neighborhood plagued by mosquitoes

Posted at 8:25 PM, Aug 01, 2012
and last updated 2012-08-02 07:08:39-04

People living in the Churchland section of Portsmouth say they are being held prisoner inside their homes by mosquitoes.

Carol Canada says, "You don’t see children, you don’t hear their laughter, you don’t see the neighbors walking and strolling. You can’t have a conversation over the fence. There is no socializing – there is no life."

Chris Turner lives next door and says he's considering selling his house because the mosquito problem has gotten so bad.

"As you can see, I’ve already got blood. I’ve been sitting here for two minutes," Turner said. "We had to cancel my daughter’s birthday party this year because of the mosquitoes."

The City of Portsmouth declined to give an on-camera interview Wednesday saying they "weren't interested" but did provide some answers.

They say mosquito spraying by trucks is regularly scheduled in all the neighborhoods, including Churchland, and that in the past 8 weeks, they have sprayed 40,000 acres in the city.

Many of the residents say the problem is particularly bad in Churchland because of the nearby Craney Island.

The only way to spray Craney Island is from the air, but the last time that happened was July 2.

E-mails obtained by NewsChannel 3 show that the city is trying to schedule another aerial spraying but have been held up with "technical issues."

When pressed, the city could only say they hoped to have another aerial spraying within the next couple of weeks.

Canada says she has emailed and called city administrators and council members since April of 2011 with little result.

She and other neighbors now plan to make their plea before the Portsmouth City Council on August 14, desperate for something to be done.

"I mean, we’re part of the Portsmouth family as well, but we all feel abandoned out here. We really do," Canada said.