Local News

Indiana health officials say the West Nile virus has been confirmed among mosquitoes in the state weeks earlier than last year.

The State Department of Health says tests found the virus in mosquitoes in southern Indiana's Orange County, which is northwest of Louisville.

The department says the virus wasn't confirmed in the insects until mid-July last year, and it's impossible to predict whether that will mean greater severity of illnesses in people because rainfall and temperatures this summer will affect the number of mosquitoes.

More than 20 Indiana residents have died from West Nile virus since the state's first human cases were reported in 2002. The virus is transmitted to humans by mosquitoes that have bitten an infected bird.