While you’re checking your home for bed bug infestations, it’s important that you also inspect your vehicle periodically for the little buggers. Full Story on the Burlington Record.
That means you need to be vigilant about what you put in your vehicle. Think twice about stowing yard sale items, for example, especially if they’re full of the nooks and crannies where bedbugs love to hide. Hop online to familiarize yourself with what bedbugs look like — and how to spot their bites and other evidence they leave behind when they head back into their lairs.
“They crawl onto your luggage and lay eggs — and they glue them on; those eggs are not going to fall off,” said White. “And always brush off the outside of your suitcase before you put it in the car.”
Prevention is a lot better than the cure. That’s because two of the three most effective methods for getting rid of bedbugs aren’t really suitable for use on automobiles. That leaves fumigation, which uses gases to permeate bug-ridden areas. “We take an auto, tarp it to make it airtight and insert gas at a certain rate until it kills the eggs and bedbugs,” said White. “The gas breaks down in air and won’t hurt people when it disperses. And it’s more environmentally friendly.
“The drawback is, it’s the more expensive option — about $1,000 to $1,200 per vehicle. So the real secret is not to get bedbugs in the first place.”
If you’ve had bed bugs in your auto or RV in the past, or if you think you may have them there now, or if you’ve had them in your home and just want some peace of mind, I’ll be happy to check your autos with Maggie to make sure there are none there, and if they are there, let you know where the infestation is.
The tiny, blood-sucking pests are light brown, and the adults are slightly less than a quarter of an inch long. They love to make their homes in mattresses, bedding and furniture. They most often feed on people at night while their victims sleep. The bugs don’t transmit disease, but their bites leave itchy white and red welts. They’re also adept at hitching rides in clothing and suitcases.
The problem is getting worse. A recent survey of pest control operators funded by the National Pest Management Association showed the problem is intensifying, especially in the South.
There’s really nothing available over the counter to tackle the problem because every bug has to be sprayed directly, and no pesticides are very good at killing the eggs, so reinfestation is common.
To help ensure you don’t bring any home from your next stay at a hotel, follow these travel tips:
• Inspect your hotel room when you arrive. Check mattress seams and folds. Look for blood spots the size of a pencil point. Check behind the headboard as well. They can even lurk in a picture frame or in a popcorn ceiling.
• If you see signs of bed bugs, demand another room, and inspect that one as well.
•- In the room, keep your suitcases away from furniture and walls until you finish your inspection. Keep your suitcase closed overnight and inside tightly sealed plastic garbage bags when you’re not using them. Keep your shoes and socks inside the plastic bag while you sleep. Bedbugs are attracted to the odor of feet.
• When packing to leave, check your clothing and luggage for signs of the small insects. Check seams and folds carefully.
• Back at home, immediately wash all your laundry from the trip in hot water, then machine dry on the highest setting for at least 20 minutes. Even if you don’t wash, putting possibly infested items into the dryer on high heat will kill bed bugs. Even dry-cleanable clothing can be put in driers if you don’t wet it first.
Read more at the Seattle Times
If you think you may have bed bugs, Maggie and I will find those bed bugs for you. To schedule a time for me to inspect your home for bedbugs, call me at (408) 389-4225 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Maggie and I will be happy to provide you some peace of mind.
A county spokeswoman says the homeowner in the southern New Jersey town of Woodbury was using a space heater, a hair dryer and a heat gun Tuesday to try to eradicate the pests in a second-floor bedroom. The combination sparked a fire. Full story on CBSNews.
A woman in Kentucky also burned down her apartment trying to eradicate bed bugs. Full story on CBSNews.
Please do not try to rid your home of bed bugs by heating it up or using any kind of flammable liquid. Leave it to the professionals. If you must do it yourself, stick with bed bug traps. There’s no sense burning down your home to kill the bugs!
Lawsuits for bed bug inspections are on the rise. A tenant in Maryland was recently awarded $800,000 in a lawsuit over bed bugs. Full Story on Baltimore Sun.
The claim was that when the resident moved into the vacant apartment, it was already infested with bed bugs. Through the course of the remediation, she ended up having to get rid of much of her property, and because she was able to prove to the court the rental owner/manager knew about the problem and failed to address it, she received a huge pay day.
Your tenant doesn’t have to get such a large judgement to ruin your whole day, and doesn’t necessarily have to prove you knew about the infestation to get a smaller judgement that doesn’t include punitive damages.
Inspecting your vacancies in between residents moving out and new residents moving in can save you money, and a huge headache. Make sure you document your inspections and the results and maintain those records for several years after the tenancy terminates.
Using a K9 detection team for bed bug inspections makes the process much easier, much faster, and you’re much more likely to find the bugs if they are there. Having a dog team check a home will really give your tenants the peace of mind they deserve.
Email or call me to schedule an inspection of your next vacancy! It’s a great preventive medicine.
The county needs to implement a pest control plan at that property that not only involves spraying for bugs, but a K9 inspection after the treatment to measure how successful the treatment was, and re-treat as necessary. Once they get on top of the problem, they need to establish a prevantive maintenance schedule where they have a K9 team inspect a percentage of apartments each month/quarter and treat the problems that are found, and recheck and retreat as necessary.
If they are aggressive about solving this problem, if they use a K9 team to locate bugs, and if they follow a preventative maintenance program to continually check and recheck for bugs, they can get handle on this problem so the residents can enjoy their homes. If they do not do that, they will never get the problem under control, no matter how many times they simply “spray” the property.
No doubt about it, bed bugs are GROSS! These videos help to illustrate how bed bugs can infest a hotel room, an office building, or even your home.
In this National Geographic, you will learn about how a bed bug infestation can wreak havoc as you sleep at night.
Bed Bugs Attack!
In this video, Kyle Tekiela discusses the bed bug infestation epidemic America is facing.
According to the Wallstreet Journal, The City of New York Health Department treated an entire floor of their headquarters building because someone found a single bed bug in the building.
That treatment may have been completely unnecessary. That could have been a case of a single bug that had hitchhiked into the building and hadn’t yet laid any eggs. It’s also possible (although it’s unlikely they had any kind of infestation in that type of building) they could have had a small infestation, something that could have been mitigated with a more limited,and cost effective treatment plan.
A well trained dog could have searched the entire building for bed bugs, and pin pointed the exact location of an infestation, if any existed, allowing the City of New York to save thousands by only treating the affected area, instead of the entire floor. A dog can locate a single bug or egg hidden in a building, potentially saving you thousands on the treatment of an entire building.