Reputation is the gold that all businesses hold dear. When it comes to hospitality a simple pest in the building can make you close down your shop the very next minute. In this age of new media, news travels very fast and therefore if a hotel is infested then it might as well forget it existed.
You are well aware of the threats this could pose to your hospitality business — the irretrievable revenue loss that comes from having rooms out of use, the lost revenue and potential for litigation by disgruntled guests. Then there’s the impact on employee relations and the risk of fines, or even shutdown, for any breach of health and hygiene regulations. However harmful these consequences are, far worse is the devastating damage to your hotel’s painstakingly built reputation if news of an infestation becomes public. “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you will do things differently.” – Warren Buffett, American Investor, industrialist and philanthropist.
The most common pest in hotels is none other than the bed bug. These creatures are very good at playing hide and seek. The only way of getting rid of them effectively is turning up the heat.
Bed bugs are historically difficult to kill using singular methods, and so pest management professionals recommend a mixture of heat and pesticides. By heating a room to 125 degrees, all bed bugs in an enclosed space will be eliminated. However, the bugs have a penchant for self-preservation that causes them to seek out cold areas as temperatures rise, and pesticides can be used in these areas to catch the bugs as they flee.
“Pest control operators like to spray areas they have a hard time getting to,” said Mark House, director of marketing for Sterifab, a producer of insecticide and disinfectant. “While wasps and bees die instantly from sprays, bed bugs can only ingest most chemicals through the stylus they put into your skin. It’s a small target, and sometimes the bug can be saturated with poison and not immediately die.”
Since bed bugs can easily hide. The only way the hotel management will be able to know that they are around is by checking for the signs and symptoms. If the symptoms are around then action should be taken immediately.
People sensitive to bites can have a raised, red swelling at each bite site or may develop a sensitivity that can include nervousness, and sleeplessness. Symptoms may also appear several days after being bitten. Bed bugs’ feces, casings, and other materials can be asthma triggers in some people. Although bed bugs feed on blood, there is no evidence that bed bugs transmit disease.
Signs of an infestation
Seeing two or more of these signs indicates that there is a bed bug problem in that room:
- Raised red bites on one or more family members;
- Live bed bugs
- Small red pellets or rusty spots on sheets
- Tiny eggs in cracks or crevices near the bed
- Skin or casings shed by bed bugs
- Musty smell
Sourced from: http://www.health.ri.gov/healthrisks/pests/bedbugs/