Update (July 5, 2017)-- The City of Anderson arrived Tuesday to mow the vacant lots. A city spokesperson said they received a report last week but did not have time to get to that project before the holiday. They also said the city sprays for mosquitoes three times each week.
ANDERSON, Ind. -- On a street in Anderson, families say they've tried for months to get someone to clean up abandoned properties that are contributing to a major mosquito problem.
"We’d be (setting off) fireworks, grilling out, (sitting by) fire pit," Branson Curtis said.
That's what Curtis said he'd like to be doing on the 4th of July. Instead, the father of two told FOX59 he'll take his family out of his neighborhood and into another town to enjoy the holiday.
Curtis called FOX59 after he said the mosquito problem at his home became awful. Experts say due to the mild winter and wet spring, mosquito populations are booming this year. Curtis blames two vacant properties, just a couple doors down from him, for making the problem worse.
"Here it is holiday weekend and I can’t even have family come over to my house because it’s too unbearable," Curtis said.
His neighbor, Gail Chamberlain, said ever since the house next to hers was torn down, it's become a nuisance property. She said the last two years have been the worst, increasing not only mosquitoes but also rodents and snakes on her property.
"Someone came over last year and they mowed it, but nobody came back this year," Chamberlain said.
Right now, the grass and weeds are nearly six feet tall. Chamberlain and Curtis said they both called multiple agencies to try to get some help, but no one has shown up to mow down the mess.
"I feel like it shouldn't have got to this point. It should’ve been done," Chamberlain said.
FOX59 did not hear back from a city of Anderson spokesperson, but did plan to follow up after the holiday.
In the meantime, Curtis said he would continue to combat the mosquitoes the best he can, and hope for some relief before the end of the summer.
"It’s out of control and something needs done about it," Curtis said.