Valley Fever

News pertaining directly to Trona, Death Valley, the northern Mojave Desert, Inyo County, and adjacent areas.

Re: Valley Fever

Postby tronagirl » Tue Jan 16, 2018 7:12 am

Apparently concern over Valley Fever is increasing and so I looked up some info about the disease. The fancy name is Coccidioidomycosis and it's a fungus found naturally in the soil throughout southern California and Arizona. Dirt bike riding is one of the most dangerous activities in this area since it kicks up a lot of dust. Dust storms aren't that big of a deal since the dust from dust storms is from the surface of the soil. Dirt bikes and quads dig into the soil where the fungus lives and shoot it into the air. People infected by Valley Fever are likely to require hospitalization and some even die. Most people who get the disease suffer with it for months and sometimes years. It's no joke!
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Re: Valley Fever

Postby panamint_patty » Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:14 am

tronagirl: I noticed a sign on the way into Ridgecrest warning about the dangers of valley fever. It's been a problem in Kern County especially for decades. It's also common in Inyo and San Bernardino counties. I've read that people who live near areas where there is a lot of ATV activity are especially at risk as you point out. If I lived in that situation I would want law enforcement to put an end to all such activity within a mile of my house! Actually, come to think of it there probably is some such activity within a mile of my house. I should probably call the BLM to see what the heck they are doing about the problem!
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Re: Valley Fever

Postby cactuspete » Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:27 am

Signs that your pet might have valley fever
If your pet can get it, then you can get it, although dogs digging around in the dirt are especially susceptible.
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Re: Valley Fever

Postby twister » Sun Aug 11, 2019 6:29 am

Valley Fever patient urges people to get tested during the Valley Fever Awareness Walk
This is an important disease to be aware of. It's something which is a problem especially in and around Kern County.
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Re: Valley Fever

Postby wildrose » Sun Aug 11, 2019 7:18 am

Valley Fever Blowing on a Hotter Wind
Off-road vehicle use is probably the biggest issue. Unlike wind, off-road vehicles dig down below the soil surface and dislodge microbes which could cause infection. For this reason, off-road vehicles should not be allowed within a quarter mile of any residence.
Griffin, the USGS microbiologist, says one gram of desert soil can contain as many as one billion microorganisms. Any type of disturbance in soil—from natural forces such as wind or earthquakes or from man—initiated activities such as construction or off-road vehicles—could spread valley fever.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/valley-fever-hotter-wind/
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Re: Valley Fever

Postby panamint_patty » Thu Aug 15, 2019 3:53 pm

Could aftermath of Ridgecrest, Trona earthquakes cause spike in Valley Fever cases?
An interesting question is raised in this article, but I would think that spores would mostly be located in the top couple feet of soil. Dirt bikes are probably the biggest issue in this area since they are likely to turn up soil and put dust in the air. If we had a lot of agriculture where big farm machines were turning over soil and putting dust in the air, then that would be an issue, but around here the main issue would be quads, dirt bikes, and other off-road vehicles that dig into the top soil and throw it up into the air.
Experts from the Valley Fever Institute in Kern County say since the earth shifted so much there's a chance there may be a spike in Valley Fever cases. Officials say they're basing their hypothesis on past experiences.

ARTICLE LINK:
https://www.turnto23.com/news/local-news/could-aftermath-of-ridgecrest-trona-earthquakes-cause-spike-in-valley-fever-cases
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Re: Valley Fever

Postby surfsteve » Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:23 am

I would think off road vehicles would cause more in one day than earthquakes over the course of several decades.
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Re: Valley Fever

Postby MojaveMike » Fri Aug 16, 2019 9:37 am

The idea of the BLM or the local sheriff getting hard core on people who kick up a little dust while on local dirt roads is something that I'm not ready for. HOWEVER, no dust should be kicked up anywhere near someone's house. People hanging out in their house or on their property should not be exposed to spores in the dirt kicked into the air by off-roaders. Remember that swamp coolers suck up whatever is in the air and blow that into your house. It's probably not a good idea to increase the risk of spreading valley fever through ORV use. I'd say a quarter mile is safe, but I would not be opposed to a full mile safety zone around private residences.
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