Assault on bedbugs at provincial court

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More bed bugs have been found at provincial court.

Orkin Canada’s K-9 Unit and technicians began an extensive fumigation process on the fourth floor of Atlantic Place on the weekend. The floor includes provincial court and related offices.

All areas of the court were inspected, steamed and vacuumed, Chief Judge Mark Pike said in a statement. The common area outside the court was also inspected, steamed and vacuumed.

The K-9 Unit led the way as the dog sniffed for evidence of the bed bugs. Two technicians followed and steamed and vacuumed each area.

The K-9 alerts to live bed bugs, eggs and larvae by sitting and scratching at the area, Pike said. This is known as a hit.

 The areas treated after bed bugs were found were the Legal Aid Commission of NL lawyers' interview room outside the new entrance to Courtroom 7 where the K-9 indicated a hit on one chair; a waiting room designated for vulnerable witnesses and victim services outside courtrooms eight and nine, where hits were indicated on two chairs and a suitcase; a waiting room designated for vulnerable witnesses and victim services outside courtrooms two and three; and an area of baseboard in the lobby outside the former entrance to court room 7. The K-9 alerted the handler to the latter area and upon close inspection, bed bug eggs and two dead bed bugs were identified.  

Removal of the baseboard revealed evidence of bedbug activity including bug feces. The area was steamed, vacuumed and treated as well, Pike said.

All areas of the court have now been treated and a regular K-9 inspection and treatment as necessary will continue beginning next week.

Inspection and treatment began for the remainder of the fourth floor by mid-Sunday morning.

Organizations: Legal Aid Commission of NL

Geographic location: Canada, Atlantic Place

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Recent comments

  • leah
    December 26, 2012 - 08:00

    Im wondering if the criminals entering their court cases are probaly bringing them in to avoid their court dates maybe the dogs should be at the entry door monitoring people as they come in.

  • Really.
    December 24, 2012 - 10:34

    The entire building needs to be fumigated. You seriously think its contained to one floor? How very ignorant.

  • Leah
    December 24, 2012 - 09:10

    Very well said, Steve, and so true. These bugs will be all over the city in time. My stomach is churning just thinking about this posssibility. When I lived away, I can remember someone finding them in their cereal boxes. Hoping and praying that they do not show up in my apt. building.

  • OMCorey
    December 24, 2012 - 09:03

    Oops sorry it wasn't your story and headline it was the headline from Bourque NewWatch. My apologies.

  • OmCorey
    December 24, 2012 - 09:00

    Was this in Newfoundland or New Brunswick? The headline says one place -- NB bbut the story another -- NL

  • Unfortunate Son
    December 24, 2012 - 08:52

    This is a great deterrent to stay out of court and live the straight and narrow.

  • Steve
    December 24, 2012 - 08:26

    This is a very serious issue. Bedbugs are extremely difficult to eradicate once they are established. They hide in walls and furniture, they are very hardy, and they can survive without feeding for months. Bed bugs do indeed bite - you don't generally feel them much at the time, because people are usually asleep when this happens, but you are left with numerous itchy red spots, and it will be very difficult to relax and go to sleep afterwards, because you will always be wondering whether they are getting ready for another feed. If you get bedbugs in your home, you have a big problem, and not only in the very difficult task of trying to get rid of them. Once people know you have bed bugs, they will not want to visit you, and they will not want you visiting their home in case you bring them in on your clothes. I disagree with the judge - I think this is a very serious occupational health and safety issue. It is true that bed bugs themselves are unlikely to cause a serious physical health problem. They do, however, cause serious mental health issues - a bed bug infestation causes social ostracization and exclusion, and once you have them, every little tingle or itch will cause you to wonder whether one is crawling on you. The stress and anxiety caused by bed bugs needs to be considered a direct result of the infestation, and no one should be forced to work in an environment that leads to this. I would personally not want to work in Atlantic Place unless this is fully dealt with. I don't think anyone should assume that the bed bugs will remain on the 4th floor.

    • Paul Maloney
      December 24, 2012 - 10:34

      Blow diatomaceous earth into cracks and crevices. It stays for the life of the structure and gets what the steam misses. Dormant bed bugs in the structure will have a much lower survival rate. This is advice from a hands on experenced eco-entomologist.

  • Mary
    December 24, 2012 - 08:13

    Where there's one bedbug,there's a million,and they won't be cleaned up until we bring back the old treatments,that were used long ago,and that's not going to happen because that stuff ,is now outlawed,so I believe we'll just have to learn to live with them. Not a very pleasant thought.

  • Sherlock
    December 24, 2012 - 07:53

    The bugs will be back even if they were eradicated. You want to know why? Because, the same people will be there over and over again with our justice system. Maybe the root cause is that there are bedbugs at the PEN, and lockup.