DUXBURY (CBS) — Aerial mosquito control spraying was taking place Sunday evening in an effort to thwart the risk of potentially deadly mosquito-borne illnesses. The first human case of Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus, or EEE, in Massachusetts was announced Saturday.

Spraying began on August 8 and was expected to continue for a few days.

Nine communities are considered to be at a “critical risk” of EEE. They are Carver, Lakeville, Marion, Middleborough, Rochester, Wareham Acushnet, Freetown, and New Bedford.

The Department of Public Health also said one of the best ways residents could protect themselves is bug spray.

“We carry our Off! spray and we have it especially outside of our own property where we do have sprayed. We do make sure we have that on,” said Joanne Morton.

She does not want her family taking any changes after a Plymouth County man tested positive for EEE. The virus is spread through pesky mosquito bites and invades the central nervous system, causing symptoms like stiff neck and a headache, to swelling of the brain.

The DPH is attacking EEE both on the ground and up above by spraying insecticides in “critical” areas around Bristol and Plymouth counties.

Morton, who lives in Duxbury, is a part of the high-risk zone. “It is a concern. I don’t think there’s been a case for several years, so there is a concern and I mean, I would think where there’s one there might be more cases, so everyone has to be very vigilant about being careful and protecting themselves.”

The state’s website includes information about mosquito-borne diseases and their prevention.

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