If you follow the news, then you know by now that the bed bug pandemic is back and it’s looking like it is here to stay. Recently, the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) conducted a study, the 2011 Bugs Without Borders Survey together with the University of Kentucky; a lot of the information and numbers that were provided may be shocking, even to those following the bed bug epidemic.
The study that was conducted using the survey format, surveyed U.S. pest management companies and concluded that 99% of the participants have dealt with bed bug infestations. Just one decade ago, just 11% of participants in a similar study reported dealing with a bed bug infestation. The difference in the numbers is absolutely staggering!
According to the National Pest Management Association’s article, Missy Henriksen, vice president of public affairs at NPMA is mostly concerned with where pest control professionals are dealing with bed bugs:
“Of most concern are the places where pest professionals are e
ncountering bed bugs, such as, schools, hospitals, and hotels/motels. In many cases the numbers of professionals who have reported treating certain types of businesses and commercial facilities has seen double digit growth.”
The scary thing is, that many people in today’s society still have the belief that “it wont happen to me.” The reality of the situation however, is that bed bugs don’t discriminate and can infest even the cleanest of homes and people.
Despite 73% of the survey’s participants reporting that bed bugs are the most difficult pest to control, the most shocking information that came out of the study conducted is the increase of percentage of bed bug treatments performed in various settings. Here are the numbers according to the survey:
College dorms (54 percent, up from 35 percent a year ago)
Hotels/motels (80 percent, up from 67 percent)
Nursing homes (46 percent, up from 25 percent)
Office buildings (38 percent, up from 18 percent)
Schools and day care centers (36 percent, up from 10 percent)
Hospitals (31 percent, up from 12 percent)
Transportation (train/bus/taxi) (18 percent up from nine percent)
Movie theaters (17 percent, up from five percent)
Survey respondents also report finding bed bugs in retail stores, laundromats, libraries, restaurants and airplanes.
If you live in NYC, you most likely frequent at least one of these places listed above at least once a day, I know I do. Taking the “it wont happen to me” attitude is naive and can only lead to your very own bed bug infestation. Education and awareness about bed bugs and their tendencies is the only way to avoid a bed bug infestation; either that or luck – you choose!