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Bedbugs Force Pace University To Shut Library

11 Oct

10/11/2011 Bedbugs Force Pace University To Shut Library

A student who works in the Henry Birnbaum Library at Pace University tells us the library has been shut down so that it can be treated for bedbugs. Our tipster tells us, “I got kicked out of work early because of an ’emergency closing’ of the library. I told the librarian i needed a specific reason to give my boss as to why they were closing, and she said ‘Don’t tell anyone this,’ and then whispered ‘bed bugs.’ ” College kids: they just can’t keep their traps shut!

The library, which is usually open until 11 p.m. on Monday nights, is currently closed, according to multiple reports. (Calls to the library went unanswered.) On Twitter, one student writes, “I swear to ‘god’ that if Pace gives me bedbugs i will find a way to get a tuition refund due to emotional distress.” And Jeff Muench, a junior at Pace, says, “This is the one time I’m proud to say that I’m glad I don’t go to the library as much as some people.” That’s right, joke’s on you, nerds!

A spokesperson for Pace, Chris Cory, could not confirm the bedbug situation, but we’ll update if we hear back. If true, this wouldn’t be the first time bedbugs to occupied a university library. Last year the Mid-Manhattan New York Public Library at 40th Street had a bit of a bloodsucker problem, and in 2009 the Denver Public Library had to quarantine and fumigate four areas at the main branch because of bed bugs. They ended up having to destroy over 30 rare books.

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Half Of All College Dorms Have Bedbugs

23 Aug

8/23/2011 Half Of All College Dorms Have Bedbugs: National Pest Management Assocation Finds 54% Have Infestation

It’s time to send the kids back to school and college, and a new survey has just revealed that bed bug infestations are on the rise.

The National Pest Management Association found that 54 percent of college dorms have bed bugs. That’s up from 35 percent the year before. The report also says that 36 percent of schools and day care centers are infested, up from just ten percent.

On Monday Newschannel 3 got an inside look at the extra lengths one local college is taking to stop the bed bugs from biting.

It’s hard enough getting kids ready for college, with the books, snacks and supplies, without worrying about bed bugs, but experts say the critters should be taken into consideration.

“It’s not a matter of cleanliness,” said Dana Jansma, Kalamazoo College. “I mean it can happen to anyone, which makes it all that more difficult.”

Unfortunately the little critters are much more commonly found in places like a dorm, just ask the folks at Kalamazoo College, which had a bed bug issue last year.

“It’s the type of problem that will not go away on its own, and you cannot fight it with basic household chemicals,” said Jansma, “and if left untreated it can turn into a real disaster.”

K-College had bed bugs in a handful of their 500 residential hall rooms last year, so they started taking action. They brought in dogs and turned up the heat to as much as 140 degrees to kill the critters off. Now they’re pest free, at least that’s what the dogs indicated recently.

“We could tell for sure we did not have any problems and could have people move in and be able to assure them everything is clean and safe and healthy for students,” said Jansma.

But unfortunately, those at K-College know it could be only a matter of time before bed bugs catch a ride into the dorms again.

“It’s something hitting everywhere across the country,” said Jansma. “It has been a big hot topic in the past several years, we were lucky to go this long without having an issue.”

The best thing to tell your kids who are away at school is to bag and seal laundry when there is a known problem, and to wash clothes and sheets in hot water.

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Dickinson State University Fends Off Bedbugs

24 Apr

4/24/2011 Dickinson State University Fends Off Bedbugs: Students Expected To Return To Rooms This Weekend

Five students recently displaced due to a bedbug infestation are expected to return to their rooms this weekend, Dickinson State University Director of Residential Life Lydia Dworshak said.

Bedbugs were discovered in one of three rooms evacuated.

“As a precaution, we removed students from the adjacent rooms,” said Constance Walter, director of DSU university relations.

She would not say which room or in which dormitory the infestation occurred.

“… I have to protect the students,” Walter said.

Officials conducted checks of every room shortly after the incident was reported and no other bedbugs were discovered, she added. The university will now check for bedbugs as part of its monthly health and safety checks, Walter said.

The students who were displaced have been staying in other rooms since the beginning of April because of the extermination process, Dworshak said.

“The spraying was done so that you don’t have to get rid of absolutely everything,” Dworshak said. “There were a few things that we chose to dispose of instead of risking it.”

However, she would not elaborate on what was thrown away.

“There’s no reason for alarm because of a health issue and I’m fairly confident with the steps that we’ve taken that we’ve gone above and beyond to take care of the problem,” Dworshak said.

She and other officials said the bugs are not a health concern.

“They’re not known disease carriers, so they’re more of a nuisance pest than anything,” Southwestern District Health Unit Executive Officer Sherry Adams said. “They don’t fly or jump or anything, they just crawl.”

However, they can cause larger issues in rare situations, she said.

“Some people may have a sensitivity because the bedbugs themselves may trigger an asthmatic response because of allergies,” Adams said. “If you have a lot of bedbugs — I mean a huge infestation — a child could get anemic if there’s lots and lots and lots of them feeding on the children.”

April Hitz, a DSU student who resides in Woods Hall, isn’t letting the incident get to her.

“I’m not really worried about it at this point,” she said.

Kenan Bullinger, director for the State Health Department, Division of Food and Lodging, said the bedbugs likely didn’t travel past the adjacent dorm rooms by themselves.

However, they are easily transmitted from one location to another, Adams said.

“People that travel and such, it’s very easy to get them and they ride along your suitcase and such,” Adams said.

DSU Student Health Nurse Carrie Knudson said exposing clothing to high heat is effective if it is suspected to have been in contact with bedbugs.

“What I would recommend is dry them in the dryer on high heat for 30 minutes and then wash them on hot and then dry them again on high heat for another 30 minutes and that should kill anything in any stages,” Knudson said.

Bullinger said there haven’t been any recent reports of bedbugs in western North Dakota. However, they have been reported in Fargo and Minot in recent years, he added.

Knudson said bedbug bites typically look similar to a mosquito bite.

“Some people who have bedbug bites will hardly see anything on their skin at all, whereas other people will have kind of raised, red welts with little bite marks on them,” she said. “That’s why it’s important to check your bedding and your mattresses and keep them clean.”

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Bedbugs Invade Hofstra University

15 Dec

12/15/10 Bedbugs Invade Hofstra University: Add To List Of Affected Places On Long Island Including Avalon Garden Nursing Home In Smithtown

Two dorm rooms at Hofstra University have been treated for bedbugs, the nuisances that have made a dramatic comeback in recent years, university officials have confirmed.

“We prefer to call them biting insects,” Hofstra spokeswoman Karla Schuster said of the bugs that were found in the Constitution Hall dormitory last month. She said exterminators treated the dorm rooms and the university sent the students’ clothing out to be cleaned. There have been no signs of the nocturnal biters since their discovery last month, Schuster said.

Bedbugs have been found in a range of unusual places on Long Island. A Smithtown nursing home is under state investigation for a possible bedbug invasion, and libraries Islandwide have been treated for the insects. The bugs have made a resurgence over the past decade after having been nearly eradicated in the United States by an all-out chemical war that began shortly after World War II. By the 1950s, bedbugs were considered a nuisance of a bygone era.

Hofstra, however, is not the only university where bedbugs have found their way into a dormitory. Numerous universities across the country have reported bedbug invasions, including Harvard University.

The bugs can hitchhike on clothing and be ferried from one place to another, often without the carrier’s knowledge.

Bedbugs do not carry infectious diseases. When they bite, they emit an anticoagulant to prevent blood from clotting and ensuring their meal will flow freely. Their bites also have anesthetic properties, which means victims do not initially feel the bite.

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Bedbugs Found In 5 GW University Dorms

18 Nov

11/18/10 Bedbugs Found In 5 George Washington University (GWU) Dorms: University Confirms Infestation

Bed bug infestations have been reported in five residence halls this semester, a University spokesperson confirmed.

University spokeswomen Michelle Sherrard declined to release the names of affected residence halls, citing privacy concerns, but said cases have been confirmed in six rooms. There have been about two dozen bed bug cases at GW in the last three years.

Four of the cases have been fully treated and the other two will be completed within the next week, Sherrard said.

Bed bugs have jumped into the medical spotlight over the last year. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a report on their resurgence, and a rash of cases in New York City have made headlines, along with high-profile infestations in two separate government buildings in the D.C. area in the last month.

Amsterdam Hall resident Tianna Morgan said her room is in the final stages of treatment to rid her bed of the insects. Morgan said she reported the creep-crawlers after seeing little red dots all over her arms and neck for more than a month.

She said she originally dismissed the marks as mosquito bites, but as the weather got cooler she called Facilities Services, who confirmed her room was infested.

“It’s kind of unnerving knowing you have bed bugs, it’s rather disgusting,” Morgan said. “It’s one of those things that you’ve heard since you were little that’s just gross.”

Eradicating bed bugs takes two weeks, Sherrard said, and affected areas are spray-treated twice during that time frame. Morgan said she had to gather up all of her belongings and move them into the living room, and then wash them all afterward. She and her roommates also had to stay out of the room for four hours after it is sprayed.

“It’s a huge pain in the butt,” she added.

In addition to Morgan’s suite, the rooms above, below and on either side or hers were treated as a precautionary measure.

“[GW takes] it very seriously,” she said, adding that Facilities Services showed up the day after she called complaining.

Sherrard said residents whose rooms test positive receive “bed bug bite-proof” certified mattress encasements, a plastic bag for bed linens and suspected clothing and an interceptor collar for the bed post from Residential Property Management, which monitors any insect movement between the floor and the bed.

The mattress encasements are used in place of disposing the infected mattresses, which could spread the bugs further.

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Bedbug Infestation Found In SUNY Oswego Dorms

10 Nov

11/10/10 Bedbug Infestation Found In SUNY Oswego Dorms: 15 Rooms Being Treated

Oswego (WSYR-TV) – SUNY Oswego has a confirmed case of bedbugs at one of the biggest dorms on campus. Approximately 15 rooms at Seneca Hall are being treated for the infestation. That work began on Wednesday and will continue through Thursday.

Bedbugs are a growing problem in Central New York and across the nation, and the problem could get worse as temperatures drop.

Bedbugs are only the size of an apple seed, but once they grab hold, the pests can be tough to get rid of.

“They’ve been found all kinds of crazy places. In the screw holes under drawers, light switches, cell phones, computers,” said SUNY ESF entomologist Kim Adams.

The pests are found most commonly in mattresses. And they’ll stay there nice and toasty even during the coldest of Central New York’s winter nights. “At 61 degrees, they really won’t be active, but people don’t want to keep their homes at 61 degrees. And they can’t for a long enough period,” Adams said.

If you get bed bugs, professional help is recommended.

“There’s not really anything over the counter that’s going to kill bed bugs. What they’re going to do is make them run. And they’re going to run fast,” said Jennifer Savastino of Gannon Pest Control. “We pull all the electrical outlet faces off and we dust in there because they will crawl through the electrical outlets and will travel around the house.”

As bed bugs change and adapt, so does the equipment meant to kill them. Gannon’s uses a steam cleaner, but there’s also freeze cleaners that use CO2 and bug-sniffing dogs.

Whatever the treatment, it has to be done at least three times – or an even bigger problem is a risk. “The ones that are not killed by the treatment then reproduce and the population becomes increasingly resistant to that particular pesticide,” Adams said. All factors SUNY Oswego must now consider as bed bugs have moved onto campus.

Once the initial work is done tomorrow at SUNY Oswego, pest control will return in a week for round two, and then again in another 30 days.

Here’s some information to protect yourself from bedbugs while traveling:

  • Travelers should check out their rooms before they move in – specifically the mattress.
  • Specks along crevices are a positive indicator of bed bugs.
  • Those who encounter bedbugs in a hotel room should not set their suitcase on the bed or floor and they should unpack in the garage or the bathroom where it’s easy to see bugs.
  • Clothes should then be washed and dried at the hottest temperature possible.

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Bedbugs Strike Cal Poly

30 Oct

10/30/10 Bedbugs Strike Cal Poly

San Luis Obispo, CA — Cal Poly has joined the ranks of New York, Philadelphia and Detroit: bedbugs have invaded. There have been recent reports of insects entering Cal Poly dorms and causing red, splotchy spots on some students’ bodies.

Bed bugs tend to inhabit dark crevices and seek out furniture, beds, clothes, suitcases and backpacks; they typically feed every week to week and a half on sleeping prey. Bed bugs are not known to transmit any blood-borne diseases. The Tribune suggests preventive measures are to keep your room clean and wash bedding regularly.

Cal Poly officials say they have been taking measures to eradicate the quarter-inch bugs.

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Other Stories On Bedbugville That May Be Of Interest

Bedbugs Reported At USC