Friday, November 13, 2009

School district sprays for bedbugs

By KENT JACKSON (Staff Writer) Published: November 12, 2009

The discovery of a child with a bedbug bite at the Valley Elementary Middle School on Tuesday led exterminators to search five schools on Veterans Day to make sure there was no infestation before classes resumed Thursday.
School administrators checked with the family of the student who was bitten and found that she had attended a sleepover. Her family and the family that hosted the sleepover have a total of six children who attend five schools: Valley, Hazleton Area High School, the Ninth Grade Center, the Hazleton Area Career Center and Heights-Terrace Elementary/Middle School.
Administrators spent the holiday with technicians from the district's exterminator, All 'Bout Critters Pest Control Co., searching those schools and checking the school schedules of the six students.
"The simplest method is to follow the student through the day," Ken Temborski of ABC Pest Control said.
So technicians checked the classrooms, lockers and buses of the six students.
"We found nothing," Temborski said.
As a precaution, technicians sprayed a mix of five chemicals in the areas where the students traveled. Temborski said the chemicals don't harm people and dry in two to four hours, so the closing of school for Veterans Day provided an ideal time to work.
"It was a coordinated effort. It was swift, very efficient," Sam Marolo, the district's superintendent, said.
The two families hired ABC Pest Control to exterminate the bedbugs in their homes, and their children won't return to school until the work is done. Temborski said treating bedbugs takes at least two treatments given two days apart.
Bedbugs are on the rise nationally, hard to see and live in crevices of furniture and bedding, he said. Impervious to household cleansers like bleach, they feed at night, but the bites don't erupt until one to three days later.
Bedbugs are attracted to body heat and not spread by dirt and filth, Temborski said.
"It's nothing to be embarrassed about," he said.

Source: Citizen's Voice