When Cleankill was called to a bed bug problem in South Kensington, London, technicians found one of the worst infestations they had ever encountered.
The building they were called to was made up of bedsits which all had sitting tenants. One of the bedsits (an area of approximately 14 feet by 16 feet) was occupied by a man in his mid-70s who lived in one room with his bed, wardrobe and armchair – all of which were heavily infested.
Cleankill technicians believe that the bed bugs had been in residence and spreading around the bedsit for several months. The tenant eventually reported the problem, when he had had enough, to his landlord who called Cleankill for help.
Director Ian Miller explains: "The man had been bitten several times but, amazingly, he didn't seem that worried about being surrounded by bedbugs. It was one of the worst and most concentrated infestations I have seen for many years. One of our main worries was the potential for the man to spread the bed bugs to other premises."
The man, a former sports journalist and a member of a prestigious sports club, could have easily transferred bed bugs on his coat to other members at the club as well as leaving the pests on the bus during his journey there.
Technicians found bed bugs behind pictures on the walls, behind the skirting boards, in cracks in the walls and on all the furniture. They had to remove the bedframe, the headboard and the armchair as well as other items that were infested.
The next step was to carry out a course of treatment which was a combination of residual insecticide and diatomaceous insecticide - a natural rock that when ingested by the bed bugs dehydrates them. It is an ideal non-toxic method of pest control.
The Cleankill team will be checking surrounding properties to check the problem hasn't spread and monitoring the premises.