The Latest: South Beach 2nd area of Zika transmission

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP) — The Latest on Zika infections in Florida (all times local):

12:45 p.m.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott says officials have identified a second area of Zika transmission on the U.S. mainland.

Scott told reporters Friday that five Zika infections have been linked to an area that encompasses most of tourist-friendly South Beach.

Florida Department of health spokeswoman Mara Gambineri says officials believe the cases were transmitted by mosquitos.

Another infection zone was previously identified in Miami’s Wynwood arts district.

Scott says two of the Miami Beach cases involved Miami-Dade County residents, and three involved tourists from New York, Texas and Taiwan. He did not say whether mosquito bites caused the infections.

Scott says the county has begun an aggressive mosquito eradication plan in Miami Beach.


10:45 a.m.

The city manager of Miami Beach has told local officials that two Zika cases are linked to the community.

In an email Thursday morning to the mayor and city commissioners, Jimmy Morales said his office had been in “constant communication” with Florida’s Department of Health, and he had been informed of two local Zika cases.

Morales said one case involved a tourist who visited Miami Beach about two weeks ago, while the other involved a resident who works in the city. He did not say whether mosquito bites caused the infections.

The Miami Herald first reported the email.

In a statement late Thursday, Morales said Florida’s Department of Health was investigating Zika cases in Miami Beach but no infections were confirmed.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott scheduled a news conference Friday in Miami about the Zika investigations.


8:30 a.m.

A Miami Beach official says there’s been no confirmation that mosquitoes have spread the Zika virus in the tourism-dependent city.

In a statement emailed late Thursday, City Manager Jimmy Morales said Florida’s Department of Health is investigating Zika cases in Miami Beach, but none have been confirmed.

Morales said the city has been “proactively focused on the elimination of potential breeding sites for months.” He said the city is working with Miami-Dade County on mosquito control efforts such as targeted pesticide spraying and cleaning up areas where the insects could breed.

In a separate statement Thursday, Florida health officials said they believe active Zika transmissions remain limited to a previously identified zone encompassing Miami’s Wynwood neighborhood. However, the department also is investigating over six other infections outside that area.

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