Property owner faces $5,000 fine for tires creating mosquito haz - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Property owner faces $5,000 fine for tires creating mosquito hazard

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FINLEY, WA. -- We're headed into mosquito season and neighbors and officials are both worried about one property that could be a breeding ground for thousands of mosquitoes.

Iris Herrin has lived out at the end of east game farm road for 40-years. But when she looks at what she calls the mess next door, she just gets angry. 

"It's disgusting. It really is," Herrin said. 

Just 5-years Iris and her late husband sold this property to the current owners who told her they would take care of the land.

"He was going to put cattle here," Herrin said. "That didn't happen so now we have this."

Iris says these tires are causing big problems in the neighborhood. 

"It actually is kind of a breeding ground for rats and mosquitoes and things like that," Herrin said. "And I don't need that. I don't need that around me anyway."

The danger for those mosquitoes is real according to Kevin McClure with Benton County Mosquito Control. He says all it takes is one inch of standing water in one of these tires to produce thousands of mosquitoes. Imagine that times hundreds of tires. Plus, these mosquitoes could be more dangerous than most. 

"The type of mosquitoes that come out of containers or tires are generally the type of mosquitoes that are the carriers for disease like West Nile Virus," McClure said.

Kevin says there's no sign of mosquito breeding yet. But if there is, treating the problem could create another one. 

"I mean if you're going through a thousand tires to try and treat a thousand tires, that's going to take a lot more time and a lot more effort," McClure said.

These tires have been here so long that on Friday, Benton County Prosecutor's Office filed unlawful storage of waste tires charges against the property owner, Gerardo Perez. 

Perez is now facing up to 364 days in jail and a $5,000 fine. All iris wants to see is the property cleaned up. 

"All of that cleaned up," Iris said. "All of it. All of it cleaned up and done right."

Benton County Mosquito Control says they'll checking every other week to see if these tires have started breeding mosquitoes.