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FREETOWN

Encephalitis discovered in deer in Freetown

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Officials have identified the first case in the state this year of a mammal carrying the Eastern equine encephalitis virus, or EEE. The virus was found in a deer in Bristol County, the state Department of Public Health said Thursday. The discovery bumps the EEE risk level up to high in Freetown and up to moderate in the surrounding towns of Lakeville, Berkley, Swansea, Somerset, Fall River, Rochester, Dartmouth, New Bedford, and Acushnet, the department said. The Freetown Board of Health is advising residents to protect themselves by wearing protective clothing, applying insect repellent, and minimizing time spent outside from dusk until dawn.

Rachel Riley can be reached at rachel.riley@globe.com.
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