Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


Woman With West Nile Virus Blames Filthy Pool in Neighbor's Foreclosed Home

Mosquito illustration via Shutterstock
Before you
Dear reader, we're asking you to help us keep local news available for all. Your tax-deductible financial support keeps our stories free to read, instead of hidden behind paywalls. We believe when reliable local reporting is widely available, the entire community benefits. Thank you for investing in your neighborhood.

A Studio City resident recently discovered she had contracted the West Nile virus, and believes the "filthy" pool in the neighboring yard of a foreclosed home is to blame.

Debbie Davis, who happens to work for KTLA as a graphic designer, told her employing station that during her diagnosis discussion, doctors asked if she had recently been near any standing pools of water. Her response: "I thought, well gee whiz, right next door to me is a house that's in foreclosure and the pool in the backyard is a filthy mess," reports KTLA.

Standing water is breeding ground for mosquitoes, who carry the virus and pass it to humans.

Davis says she and other neighbors reported the pool to health officials as far back as March, but the pool was not drained. Instead, "County Vector Control was notified of the home near Davis in May and has treated it on a monthly basis," a county health employee told KTLA.

Support for LAist comes from

Truc Dever, Director of Community Affairs at the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District, confirms that information to CBS2, but denies that the treated pool could currently be a haven for mosquitoes:

“I can tell you this particular property in question, we have been treating the pool since May. So as long as we know about the pool, it is not a breeding hazard,” Dever said.

A 17-year-old boy who also lives in the same Studio City neighborhood as Davis has reported West Nile virus-like symptoms, and is awaiting diagnosis. Dever notes that both cases have yet to be confirmed.

The foremost recommendation by the Centers for Disease Control in order to prevent exposure to West Nile virus is to protect yourself against mosquito bites.

There have been 26 reported cases of West Nile in California this year, and of those, four in the greater L.A. area. One elderly Kern County woman's death this year was West Nile-related.