Drenching rains and floods helped dampen the number of West Nile virus cases in Ohio this year. Across the state, the number of people with probable and confirmed cases of West Nile virus dropped dramatically, from 441 a year ago to 68 this year. Deaths attributed to the virus dropped as well...from 31 to four. The biggest difference between the last two years has been the weather. Last year’s heavy rains followed by a summer-long drought led to perfect breeding conditions for mosquitoes that help transmit the disease. They thrive in pools of standing water in flower pots, bird baths and storm water catch basins. But this year the rains never stopped and kept washing away breeding mosquitoes.