They’re Spraying Bleach Water Over a Mexican Border City to Stop the Spread of Coronavirus

The coronavirus is a rapidly developing news story, so some of the content in this article might be out of date. Check out our most recent coverage of the coronavirus crisis, and subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

Local government officials in the border city of Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, are dropping bleach water from helicopters in an attempt to eliminate coronavirus—despite health officials advising against it. 

Univision reported Sunday that the city’s mayor, Armando Cavada, is having sodium hypochlorite sprayed over more than 800 acres of border neighborhoods because “it’s the same material, or sanitizer, used to disinfect operating rooms,” Cavada said—a substance that cleans “totally well.”

On Wednesday morning, the helicopter was back at it, as immigration attorney Taylor Levy pointed out on Twitter:

After the first spray last week, a Juárez resident took to Facebook to say that family members had experienced eye irritation, coughing, and vomiting. Local health officials spoke out against the tactic. They argued there is no scientific evidence that spraying at that distance would help in the first place, Univision reported, and that it also negatively affects the city’s flora and fauna. 

The first round of spraying is supposed to continue for a week and will cost approximately US$65,000, according to El Diario, a local newspaper. 

While Mexico hasn’t been hit as hard by the coronavirus as other countries—there have been more than 16,700 confirmed cases and more than 1,560 deaths, including 259 and 64, respectively, in Juárez—it’s still slightly behind the US timeline. The latest government projections say Mexico will see the peak of the pandemic in mid-May. 

HERE ARE THE FACTS:

Our fall fundraising drive is off to a rough start, and we very much need to raise $250,000 in the next couple of weeks. If you value the journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us do it with a donation today.

As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

payment methods

ONE MORE QUICK THING:

Our fall fundraising drive is off to a rough start, and we very much need to raise $250,000 in the next couple of weeks. If you value the journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us do it with a donation today.

As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate