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Bed bugs found in public establishment

Calvert Library Prince Frederick branch manager, Marcia Hammett, was collecting the returned items from the book drop at approximately 3 p.m. on Wednesday, July 20, 2016, and noticed a few small bugs scurrying for cover.

Because she was concerned that it might be a bed bug, she immediately implemented the library’s response plan. Hammett quarantined the book drop and contacted the county’s pest control staff who immediately came to the library.  He confirmed that the bug was likely a bed bug. 

Following best practice, all forty-five items in the room were sealed in zip-top bags and then those bags were double bagged in garbage bags. The exterminator will treat the room in the morning. 

A canine bed bug detection service will inspect the entire Calvert Library Prince Frederick at 12:30pm on Thursday, July 21.  Canines have a 90-97 percent accuracy rate in detecting bed bugs.

Library procedure would have been to contact the customer but the library books that hosted the bug had not been checked out, so the library was not able to alert them to the potential problem in their home.  On rare occasion, books leave the building without having been checked out.

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, public transit, hospitals, nursing homes and theaters. 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.

For more information about how to deal with a bed bug infestation or better yet, avoid one, take a look at this information page Kalamazoo Library put together http://www.kpl.gov/guides/bed-bugs/.

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