Dubai's health inspectors ‘winning war of awareness’ against pests
Dubai’s pest patrol claim to be winning the war on vermin in the city - despite uncovering more than 8,500 infestations in the first three months of the year.
The municipality yesterday revealed the number of public-health notices issued during the period was 8.3 per cent lower than in 2011.
“The decline in public-health notifications indicates the success of the methods used by the section this year,” said Hisham Abdul Rahman Yahya, head of Public Health Pest Control.
“Pests are a major problem in Dubai, so starting this year we focused on intensified public awareness and reduction in the use of chemical substances by using alternative bio and mechanical methods.”
He said the use of chemicals was less effective as people avoided them for health reasons, while some pest control firms used adulterated versions to cut costs.
Due to its role as an international travel hub, the UAE has a high concentration of pests, especially bed bugs.
Earlier this year, the municipality launched an awareness campaign as part of a drive to eradicate rats, which continue to pose serious health and safety risks in homes.
The ‘Farewell to Rodents’ campaign has now been rolled out to about 5,000 villas in Al Barsha, Al Warqa and Oud Muteena through door-door visits by public health officials, who advise residents on ways to avoid pests in homes.
“We consider public awareness to be the first step in ensuring that prevention measures are adhered to,” said Yahya.
The pest control section has also organised a number of awareness programmes at the Princess Haya Cultural and Islamic Centre and other health centres in coordination with the First Aid Section of Dubai Health authority.
The awareness programme also included eight lectures and workshops under the title ‘Harmful pests to our health’ in government offices and private schools.