QA li­braries pass Scruffy test: Dog says they’re bed bug free

Record Observer - - FRONT PAGE -

STEVENSVILLE — Over the past few weeks bed bugs have been found in sev­eral li­braries on the East­ern Shore. The first oc­cur­rence was in Dorch­ester on Oct 1. The East­ern Shore li­braries work closely and proac­tively to­gether so com­mu­ni­ca­tion about the bed bugs and clo­sures at Dorch­ester were im­me­di­ately shared with all li­brary sys­tems on the Shore. Queen Anne’s County Li­brary had both li­brary build­ings in­spected by All Pest K9 on Tues­day, Oct. 9, and both build­ings were cer­ti­fied as bed bug free.

Other li­brar y sys­tems have also had dog in­spec­tions over the past few weeks, and two sys­tems, Kent and Caro­line coun­ties have also tested pos­i­tive for bed bugs in iso­lated ar­eas of their build­ings. The fa­cil­i­ties in th­ese coun­ties were closed im­me­di­ately and will only re­open once the fa­cil­i­ties are treated and re-in­spected and cer­ti­fied bed bug free.

Queen Anne’s County Li­brary Direc­tor John

Walden said “We un­der­stand and share the pub­lic con­cern re­gard­ing the re­cent out­break of bed bugs in li­braries. We are con­fi­dent that our col­lec­tion is safe and that our li­brary lo­ca­tions are free of bed bugs. How­ever, li­brary staff will re­main vig­i­lant and will con­tinue to in­spect ma­te­ri­als that are re­turned to the li­brary.”

The East­ern Shore Re­gional Li­brary is also be­ing proac­tive by hav­ing all de­liver y vans and book bins in­spected and treated for bed bugs to pre­vent any cross con­tam­i­na­tion be­tween li­braries on the Shore. All sys­tems have quar­an­tine pro­ce­dures in place for items that may show signs of bed­bug ac­tiv­ity.

Bed bugs are un­com­mon in li­braries. They feed at night on blood, and since there is noth­ing to feed on at night in li­braries, it’s not their fa­vorite en­vi­ron­ment. They are more likely to be found in ho­tels, cruise ships, hospi­tals, nurs­ing homes and dorm rooms. Bed bugs do not carry dis­ease and their pres­ence is not an indi­ca­tion of a dirty home. They do bite and are def­i­nitely a pest that the li­brary does not wel­come. If you ever sus­pect your home or a li­brary book might have bed bug

eggs, nymphs or adults, please bring the book back in a sealed bag and alert li­brary staff.

There is no need to stop go­ing to the li­brary. The staff is tak­ing all rea­son­able pre­cau­tions and in­spect­ing all items re­turned to the li­brary. Ev­ery­one should check books as care­fully as the li­brar­i­ans are. Bed bugs do hitch­hike if given the op­por­tu­nity. They do not jump or fly, but they can crawl pretty quickly and are at­tracted to car­bon diox­ide (our ex­ha­la­tions) be­cause they feed on blood, not crumbs or waste.

Bed bugs have an un­canny abil­ity to spread us­ing un­sus­pect­ing peo­ple and their be­long­ings as car­ri­ers. While it is won­der­ful to live in a com­mu­nity that trav­els, it does mean there is the risk of bring­ing un­pleas­ant things home to Queen Anne’s in your lug­gage. They can be found even in the clean­est fives­tar ho­tels. No one wants bed bugs in their home so it is wise to take pre­cau­tions.

There are steps to take if you think you may have been ex­posed to bed bugs. You can keep a clean change of clothes in a zip­top bag and change into those be­fore go­ing into your house and im­me­di­ately put your ex­posed cloth­ing in the dryer for at least

30 min­utes on high heat. Leave your ex­posed shoes out­side your home or per­haps in a zip-top bag. Other rec­om­men­da­tions from the Na­tional Pest Man­age­ment As­so­ci­a­tion are:

• Vac­uum suit­cases af­ter re­turn­ing from a va­ca­tion.

• Check your sheets for tell­tale blood spots.

• Con­sider bring­ing a large plas­tic trash bag to keep your suit­case in dur­ing ho­tel stays.

• Carry a small flash­light to as­sist you with vis­ual in­spec­tions.

• Never bring sec­ond­hand fur­ni­ture, es­pe­cially mat­tresses and box springs, into a home with­out thor­oughly ex­am­in­ing for signs of bed bugs. Con­sider hav­ing a pest con­trol pro­fes­sional in­spect the fur­ni­ture as it is dif­fi­cult to de­tect an in­fes­ta­tion with­out train­ing.

• Reg­u­larly in­spect ar­eas where pets sleep for signs of bed bugs.

• Seek pro­fes­sional pest con­trol as­sis­tance to ad­dress an in­fes­ta­tion.

For more in­for­ma­tion on bed bugs, fol­low this link to the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol,

https://www.cdc.gov/ par­a­sites/bed­bugs/faqs. html.

CON­TRIB­UTED PHOTO

Scruffy the cute and hard-work­ing ter­rier from All Pest K9 was de­ployed at both the Cen­tre­ville and Kent Is­land li­braries ear­lier this month to in­spect both build­ings for bed bugs.

JOHN WALDEN

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.