The Massachusetts Department of Public Health is reporting that mosquitos found in Mattapoisett have tested positive for the EEE virus. In a written statement, the state agency says that the mosquitos were tested as part of a batch on July 23.

Three mosquitoes tested positive for the Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus that has been a thorn in the side of health officials for the past decade or so.

The Centers for Disease Control says that while it is rare for the virus to be spread from the insects to humans, care should be taken to protect yourself from being bitten.

Under some circumstances, EEE can prove to be fatal. The CDC reports that approximately 30 percent of the people that contract the rare brain infection will die, while survivors can face a number of neurological damage.

The EEE problem has also caused problems for high school athletic directors here on the SouthCoast, causing football and other fall sports that are played outdoors to be rescheduled to daylight hours.

Taking the latest data into consideration, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health is rating Mattapoisett as a "moderate risk" community to contract EEE. Two of the three mosquitoes that tested positive were found in the northwest quadrant of Mattapoisett, while the third was found in the western part of town.

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