Moving and bed bugsBy Eric Anders • Dec 3rd, 2009 • Category: Bed Bugs, Consumer Help
The question isn’t all that surprising, however. In fact, in today’s mobile, global society, it’s actually more appropriate than most relocation professionals would think. More and more insurance companies are receiving the same types of inquiries about potential claims under their homeowners or rental insurance policies.
Bed bug infestations are on the rise in all types of residences worldwide – particularly in large metropolitan or densely populated, high traffic areas such as short lease hotels/motels and residence inns, condominium complexes, and apartment buildings. Colleges and universities (or any residence hall based housing) are particularly vulnerable because of the close community living arrangements, number of foreign visitors, and highly transient student population.
The problem has become so severe that some city health departments and institutions have established bed bug advisory boards and panels. Some large metropolitan areas like New York City now use bed bug sniffing dogs to quickly detect an infestation in public buildings and transportation resources.
NOTE: Be sure to check out the informative new articles and updated resources listed below.
According to Richard Cooper, an entomologist, the last big outbreak of bed bugs occurred just after WW II. That wave was controlled in the U.S., in part, by the wide spread use of pesticides such as DDT and Malathion. In late ‘90s, the problem with bed bugs began to reemerge in the United States, Canada, Australia, the UK, along with a number of other countries with the increased frequency of international travel.
Copper operates Bed Bug Central http://bedbugcentral.com/ – a well organized, comprehensive website packed with all types of bed bug information, remediation suggestions and products for the public, and resources for the pest management industry.
Bed bugs are great hitchhikers so it’s possible that a moving and storage or truck rental company, public or private storage facility, or mobile/portable container transportation service could harbor the pests. However, since bed bugs require a host to feed and thrive, it’s more likely that these types of moving services were used to transport them between one area of infestation to another.
There are several things you can do to protect your household goods, clothes and bedding from exposure to this pesky problem before your undertake any other pre-move arrangements:
- If you currently have a bed bug problem, or will live someplace where infestations are known to occur frequently, take steps immediately to eradicate the problem. Ask your landlord, leasing agent, or building manager for assistance.
- Thoroughly clean the areas where bugs or eggs may reside with hot, soapy water or high dry heat such as a hair dryer both before and after your move.
- Vacuum all carpeted areas and mattresses several times very carefully.
- Encase your mattresses, box spring and all bedding in plastic. The products listed below are vent-free for maximum protection.
- Use new cartons to pack freshly laundered clothes, bedding and pillows. If used packing material is obtained, line each carton with sealable plastic bags before filling.
- For extreme infestations, a licensed pest management professional (exterminator) may be necessary.
Using a personal bed bug detector when moving – RELO Roundtable
Bedbugs may play role in spread of drug-resistant bacteria MRSA, study finds - The Washington Post
How to move WITH bed bugs – RELO Roundtable
Movers participate in EPA’s National Bedbug Summit – RELO Roundtable
Moving? Cheap bed bug protection – RELO Roundtable
Bedbug Disclosure – Insurance Information Institute
What matters most when planning a move? – RELORoundtable
Bed bugs are back! – New York State Integrated Pest Management Program/ Cornell University
Bed Bug Fact Sheet – Cornell University Insect Diagnostic Laboratory
How to Move and Leave Bed Bugs Behind – Michigan Bed Bug Working Group
Stop Bed Bugs – New York City Department of Sanitation
Bedbug Lawsuits Growing – CNET TV (video)
Have questions or need professional assistance with an upcoming moving and storage issue, or help choosing a domestic or international relocation product or service supplier?
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