By: Wang Shwu-fen and Lilian Wu
Taipei, Jan. 11 (CNA) Dengue fever in southern Taiwan’s Kaohsiung has not slackened off this year, mainly because temperatures have spiked following a period of rainfall, Kaohsiung city government officials said Monday.
Kaohsiung, which recorded nearly 20,000 cases of dengue fever last year and was one of the hardest-hit cities in the country, had reported 146 cases of the mosquito-borne disease in the first 10 days of this year, compared with 33 cases in the same period of last year.
Health officials said that in addition to a warm winter with an average temperature of 24 degrees Celsius, there was also abnormally high rainfall. In particular, the mercury climbed after the rain, creating perfect breeding conditions for the vector mosquitoes.
Kaohsiung Deputy Mayor Chen Chin-de (陳金德), who presided over this year’s first inter-agency meeting on dengue fever Monday, asked the environmental protection bureau and other related agencies to step up cleaning of the environment in line with a national cleansing campaign in the runup to Chinese New Year, which falls on Feb. 8 this year.