2nd Bed Bug Infestation at OSU

A bed bug infestation—not the first—was confirmed at Oklahoma State University’s family housing residence, according to university director of housing’s Matthew Brown, wrote News OK. “This is a problem across the country and it is just now getting into Oklahoma and the colleges,” Brown said. “Bed bugs are making a comeback because pesticides are not as potent as they were in the past,” Brown added, quoted News OK.

Brown is correct, in part. The growing problem with bedbug infestations has been linked to increased travel; the reduced use of powerful pesticides like dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), which was banned in the 1960s; and use of narrow spectrum products targeting specific pests, allowing others to survive. This has led to what appears to be a pesticide resistance that the pests are developing, which has led the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to issue a warning against using outdoor chemicals indoors, said The New Star, previously. Of note, some of these chemicals are known to have adverse effects on the central nervous system and can cause skin and eye irritation and cancer.

Brown announced that while inspections did not reveal evidence of bed bugs in other rooms or buildings, there have been other incidents—this is the second this week, alone—of infestations in family student housing, wrote News OK. While only one bedbug was seen, said Brown, one is sufficient to initiate the cleaning process, said News OK. The first case this week was in a dorm room on Drummond Hall’s ninth floor.

According to Brown, thermal remediation was used, with four portable furnaces run by diesel generators that used 20 heat sensors that heated the area for five hours at 130 degrees Fahrenheit, explained News OK. The process killed bugs, bed bugs, and mold, and was followed with a pesticide spray, added News OK.

We just wrote that another campus was plagued with the pests. Most recently, classrooms and dormitories at North Carolina’s Catawba College were inspected for the tiny bloodsucking parasites, said WSOCTV previously. Over 100 students were evacuated following reports of an infestation. An exterminator involved in treating that infestation said inspecting all of the campus buildings was a wise move, noting that if bed bugs are in dorms, then they are likely to be found in classrooms, wrote WSOCTV.

It’s widely known that bed bugs have been plaguing hotels and motels with infestations becoming more and more prevalent and widespread. Now, infestations have been reported in movie theatres; offices; dressing rooms; hospitals and colleges; and most recently, at Nike Inc.’s flagship store, NikeTown, in Manhattan. Business Week also just wrote that bed bugs were reported in a New York City theater, “other stores, housing projects, and posh apartments.” ABC News also wrote that bed bugs have invaded Victoria’s Secret, Hollister, and Abercrombie and Fitch.

Five states have sought assistance from the Department of Defense and Ohio asked the Environmental Protection Agency for special permission to use a banned pesticide to eradicate its problem, said ABC News.

In response, the City of New York implemented an outreach and information program, with information accessible here.

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