City of Houston Zika Virus Announcements

The below content is directly copy/pasted from emails from the City of Houston. We recommend that you sign up to receive these, and emails like these, by going to this address:


The City of Houston is taking the Zika Virus very seriously. The Houston Health Department held a planning meeting on January 29th with Harris County and our regional partners, including blood banks, healthcare providers, petrochemical companies, mosquito control specialists, and others to begin developing plans for pre-emptively preparing for and preventing the transmission of Zikavirus in the Houston-area. The City will continue coordinating with regional, state and federal partners to prevent the virus.

The virus is transmitted to people through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito. The infection is usually mild, lasts from several days to a week and includes fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis (red eyes). Severe illness requiring hospitalization is uncommon, but there may be serious complications for pregnant women.

This week, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the Zika virus an international emergency and public health officials are considering barring patients who have traveled to affected areas from donating blood for up to 28 days.

How do we stop the spread of the virus? 

  • Remove ALL mosquito breeding opportunities around your home by eliminating all standing water, or items that may hold water.
  • Use air conditioning or window/door screens to keep mosquitos out.
  • If you are traveling to Central or South America or the Caribbean, it's important to prevent mosquito bites.
  • Use insect repellent that contains DEET.
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
  • When you return home, continue using DEET containing insect repellent for two weeks.

For more information on the Zika virus in our community, pregnancy tips, and travel alerts visit:  

Frequently Asked Questions can be found here:


City of Houston Begins Trash Roundup to Reduce Mosquito Breeding Grounds, Combat Zika

As part of Mayor Sylvester Turner's Zika Virus response plan, the City of Houston Solid Waste Management Department has started a comprehensive citywide cleanup of illegal dump sites and collection of heavy trash to help reduce mosquito breeding sites.  The special collection sweeps will occur on Saturdays for the near future. Normal junk waste collection will proceed per the regular schedule.

Residents can help by doing the following: 

  • Eliminate all standing water from their property.
  • Remove all trash because mosquitoes can breed in areas as small as a water bottle.
  • Make sure to empty water from discarded tires and separate them from the rest of your junk waste pile at the curb to allow the SWMD employees to properly sort the materials.
  • Report illegal dumping sites by calling 311.
  • Utilize one of the six Neighborhood Depository/Recycling Centers listed below to dispose of heavy trash if you miss the collection date in your neighborhood.

Northeast: 5565 Kirkpatrick
Northwest: 14400 Sommermeyer
North: 9003 North Main
Southeast: 2240 Central Street
South: 5100 Sunbeam
Southwest: 10785 Southwest Freeway 

For more information about the City of Houston Solid Waste Management Department and its services, please visit us at, like us on Facebook at, follow us on twitter @houstontrash or call 311, the City of Houston's Customer Service Hotline.