Given our modern ability to share nearly every moment via technology, what happens on vacation seldom stays there. Unfortunately, if a traveler unwittingly shares their lodging with bed bugs, memories may not be all they bring back home. That’s why facility managers are especially keen to keep bed bugs at bay.
Beds, Bags and Beyond
Bed bugs are among those pests that people may associate with unclean or “seedy” accommodations, and that misconception is where lack of vigilance may lie. The fact is, even the most luxurious bed in the highest quality hotel isn’t immune to an infestation. Further, bed bugs don’t even need a bed; they can lurk on other furniture, in carpets or on modes of transportation, such as buses, trains or planes.
Regardless of where they were “picked up,” bed bugs that find their way into bags or other belongings are bound for the traveler’s home. That’s why it’s critical for facility managers at hotels, motels and resorts, as well as landlords of apartment buildings, to take measures to prevent bed bugs.
Bed Bug Busters
In the battle against bed bugs, Braman recommends these protocols:
- Thoroughly vacuum areas surrounding beds as well as mattresses themselves.
- Launder bedding using a steam cleaning process, or ensure your dryer is able to reach sufficient temperatures (up to 120°F).
- In hotels and other lodging facilities, protect mattresses with ActiveGuard mattress liners. These are pesticide-impregnated fitted sheets that kill incoming bed bugs that may be hitchhiking on guests. (Contact us to purchase these or learn more.)
- Regularly inspect the entire room or unit (bedrooms and upholstered furniture), paying special attention to areas behind a bed’s headboard, in the seams of mattresses and carpeting along baseboards.
- Recognize evidence of bed bugs, including black or dark red pepper-like stains(digested blood), tan or pale debris (possible skin casings) and, of course, seeing the bugs themselves—they are small, flat, oval-shaped and wingless.
- Take pictures and save samples! There are many insects that look similar or might be mistaken for bed bugs.
- If you see or suspect bed bugs, call a professional immediately. Infestations can worsen quickly, so don’t wait.
- Properly document all inspections, findings, complaints and actions taken. This will be helpful in targeting problem areas in the future and for ongoing prevention efforts.
- Be sure to train staff and environmental contractors in these protocols.
Keep Bed Bugs at Bay
Bed bugs are a reality and a nuisance, but they can be beaten. Our certified specialists can advise you on effective treatment options as well as our professional prevention programs. Contact us to start a partnership today—and put your facility’s pest problems to bed.