Mosquito-proof coolers: MCD`s formula to check dengue

Use special mosquito-proof coolers to keep dengue and chikungunya at bay.

New Delhi: Use special mosquito-proof coolers to keep dengue and chikungunya at bay -- this will be the advice of Municipal Corporation of Delhi to the citizens ahead of the larvae breeding season next year.
The civic body plans to publish advertisements to make people aware about the environment-friendly cooler, which was developed by the National Centre for Disease Control in 2007.

According to the MCD, 70 per cent of mosquito breeding in Delhi has been found in coolers. This year alone, over 5,000 dengue cases have been reported here.

"Since coolers are a favourite breeding spot of mosquitoes and the cause of increasing dengue cases here, we have decided to advertise about mosquito-proof coolers (MPC) and its benefits. This we will do much in advance before the next dengue season," Dr V K Monga, Chairman of MCD Medical Relief and Public Health Committee, said.
According to T G Thomas, Joint Director of NCDC, MPC looks like any other conventional cooler with little modifications in its water tanks.

"Unlike the conventional coolers, MPC has a metallic sheet that has been put above the water tank inside the cooler which covers it completely to prevent mosquitoes from entering and breeding there. While the former requires regular cleaning to check for mosquito larvae breeding, MPC needs a clean-up only once in two months," Thomas said.

It has a modified water tank and does not have any other hole which can allow vectors to get through except the water inlet and outlet.

"These water inlets and outlets are covered with strong steel net which will not allow any mosquito to enter. It will also not require water to be filled every day as is done in a conventional cooler because the stored water inside the cooler does not evaporate," he said.

Monga said, "One does not need to buy a new cooler but make small modifications in the existing one that will cost a minimal Rs 500 or so. This cooler is environment-friendly as there is no need to sprinkle harmful chemicals in its water tank to stop mosquito breeding."

He said that he would write to government offices in order to encourage them to use this cooler