Natural Disasters

Hot Summer May Be Driving West Nile Outbreak

2012 on track to be the worst ever, with more than 1,000 cases reported so far.


The West Nile virus outbreak of the summer of 2012 is on track to be the worst ever in the United States. Health officials said earlier this week that there have been 1,118 reported cases of the disease reported in 38 states, including 41 deaths.

Forty-seven states have seen some sort of West Nile virus activity, be it in people, birds or mosquitoes; the only exceptions are Alaska, Hawaii and Vermont. Since the first time West Nile Virus was detected in 1999, there has never been as many reported cases through the third week in August.