Rhode Island warns of active tick season after mild winter
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island health officials are reminding residents that even in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, tick season is fast approaching.
Rhode Island has the fifth-highest rate of Lyme disease in the country, the Department of Health said in a statement this week.
Because the winter was mild, more ticks that usual have likely survived until spring and with many more people expected to be outside this year, authorities are concerned that 2020 may be a bad year for tick bites and the transmission of Lyme and other diseases.
Rhode Island had 1,111 cases of Lyme disease, a rate of 105 cases per 100,000 people, in 2018, the latest year for which data is available, the health department said.
Authorities recommend residents use tick repellant on their clothing; avoid brushy areas; wear long sleeves and pants when outside; and wear light-colored clothing to see ticks more easily.