BATON ROUGE, La. (Sept. 6, 2002) — The Louisiana Independent Tire Dealers Association has organized a statewide scrap tire gathering campaign to combat the spread of the deadly West Nile Virus.
The LITDA has sent public service announcements to all major TV outlets in the state, advising motorists they can bring as many as 10 scrap tires each to their local LITDA member dealers free of charge.
Those with more than 10 tires should contact LITDA Executive Director Norm Rhea (225-664-5181), who can put them in touch with the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality on how to obtain a permit to dispose of the tires.
Mr. Rhea estimates the association has rid Louisiana of 500 to 1,000 unwanted tires in the past three weeks. Although the mosquitoes that most often carry the West Nile Virus don't normally lay their eggs in scrap tires, a discarded tire left alone and unprocessed can possibly be a breeding ground.
Louisiana has the worst epidemic of the West Nile Virus of any U.S. state, with 222 of the 754 reported cases so far this year.