A student living in Golden Bear South 80 came forward to Housing and Residence Life and identified what appeared to be bed bugs in his or her room two weeks ago.
When asked how the bed bugs got into this room, Director of Housing and Residence Life, Kent Dahlquist said, “They were brought in by someone else. The mattresses are bed bug resistant in Golden Bear South.”
A sample confirmed that there were in fact bed bugs in this individual’s room. The Protocol for Response to Bed Bugs was then put into place once it was confirmed that there actually were bed bugs in this one room. This is a public document that can be viewed at http://www.kutztown.edu/admin/facilities/PDF/KU%20Bedbug%20ProceduresR1.pdf
The following procedures were put in place at Golden Bear South: once the sample confirmed that there were bed bugs in the room, the student in the room was moved to a new room, and as a precaution, the individuals living on either side of the room and in the three rooms directly above and below it were moved as well. Nine apartments in all were evacuated in Building 80.
The students were then advised to remove all personal items from their rooms, and launder all of their clothing items and bedding. The students reported to the building director, who then assigned the students to different available rooms in Golden Bear South. Students living in single rooms were able to be relocated to a single room, and those who were living in double rooms were moved to double rooms.
The process of giving students temporary rooms and treating the infected spaces took fourteen days. A pest control company was contacted in order to assess where exactly the bed bugs were in the room. On the third day in the fourteen-day timeline, the students moved out of their rooms and into their new rooms. On the fourth day, the pest control company came in and started to treat the space.
After the pest control company performed the treatment, there was a wait period before the Housing Department’s custodial staff came in and thoroughly cleaned all of the rooms. The rooms were then inspected again by the pest control company, and finally the students moved back in after the rooms were given the OK.
In the past few years, the United States has seen a dramatic increase in the number of bed bugs springing up in households and hotels. Common places that bed bugs can be found in are houses, schools, hotels and dorm rooms. The bugs aren’t only limited to beds; they can also live in couches, chair cushions, baseboard crevices and anywhere else around a household.
Bed bugs, like mosquitos, are small insects that bite and suck blood. Bed bugs are hard to see but they leave behind small brown or red specs that are easier to spot when looking for them.
By Samantha Biastre