Bed Bugs - 43 Bythia Street, Orangeville

Apr 24th, 2019
By mdunne

Dufferin County was contacted in mid January by a tenant with possible concerns.  The next day a pest control contractor conducted an inspection of that unit and several other areas. It was determined that treatment was required. The tenants were provided instructions on how to prepare the units. Four days after the initial complaint the common areas on the affected floor and the first unit were treated (the unit was treated again several days later.) One week after the issue was raised, there was a meeting with the tenants to provide information on the steps being taken to assess and deal with the concerns. That same week the remaining common areas were treated. Additional inspections and treatments have been completed since that time with the pest control company being on site 18 different days in the past three months. Information had been provided to the tenants on an ongoing basis.

In an effort to increase the accuracy of detection a K9 Unit, specializing in bed bug detection, inspected all 89 units and the common areas at 43 Bythia on April 10th and 11th. Highly trained dogs have been found to be the most effective way to find bed bugs. According to the website for Orkin Canada, a well known pest control company, “many University studies have shown that trained bed bug dogs are much more accurate than a trained technician.”  Following these inspections it was concluded that 9 units and all common areas required treatment. Subsequently, all 9 identified units and common areas were professionally prepared and treated this past week from April 15-17. Various techniques were employed depending on the needs of the tenants.  As per best practices, a follow up inspection and treatment will be conducted in 14 days.

The County of Dufferin is promoting a ‘no shame, no blame’ policy, whereby timely reporting is strongly encouraged without any fear of reprisal. In collaboration with a monthly pest management program, these efforts will assist with prevention, early detection and if required successful remediation.

Bed bugs are small biting insects that can multiply quickly and travel easily.  It is possible for any one to have an infestation of bed bugs, regardless of income or housing. Bed bugs can be found in hotels, motels, apartments, condos, private homes and even in public places such as businesses and offices. The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention states,  “Bed bugs are not known to spread disease. Bed bugs can be an annoyance because their presence may cause itching and loss of sleep. Sometimes the itching can lead to excessive scratching that can sometimes increase the chance of a secondary skin infection. A bed bug bite affects each person differently. Bite responses can range from an absence of any physical signs of the bite, to a small bite mark, to a serious allergic reaction. Bed bugs are not considered to be dangerous; however, an allergic reaction to several bites may need medical attention.”

The treatment of bed bugs in a multi unit building can be very challenging, requiring efforts from everyone involved. According to Health Canada, “bed bugs are very hard to get rid of… and treatment will only be effective if physical control methods and preventative measures are used together.”

The County of Dufferin takes this matter seriously and will continue to take the necessary steps required to resolve this issue.