Singapore charges contractors for mosquito breeding amid dengue fever outbreak

Ten contractors in Singapore will be charged in court for mosquito breeding offences as the city-state suffers a record-breaking outbreak of dengue fever.

Allowing pools of water to form on floors of buildings under construction are among the "egregious cases" of providing places for larvae to hatch.

Already this year, 21 stop-work orders have been issued to construction sites for failing to control breeding spots, while reported cases of dengue climbed to 29,206 since the beginning of January, breaking a previous record set in 2013, said the National Environment Agency (NEA) this week.

The virus carried by the Aedes aegypti mosquito can cause an acute flu-like illness which can cause potentially lethal complications.

Singapore’s struggle against dengue fever comes on top of its struggle against coronavirus, which is projected to wipe some $S10bn off demand for construction services in the city-state this year.

One construction site halted this week at Serangoon North Avenue 1 had "profuse mosquito breeding habitats … [including] water ponding in the units of higher floors, with 50 or more larvae at each habitat," said NEA.

Other breeding habitats discovered elsewhere by inspectors included an air-conditioner compressor, canvas sheeting, and planter boxes.

"These egregious cases of mosquito breeding show that some construction site management are still not carrying out the necessary basic vector control checks, despite the current serious dengue situation, and the extensive communications and outreach on dengue prevention over the past few months," said NEA.

Image: The virus carried by the Aedes aegypti mosquito can cause an acute flu-like illness, and sometimes death (James Gathany/Public domain)

Story for GCR? Get in touch via email: [email protected]

Latest articles in News