Bedbug treatment continues at Chorey Park
Published 10:01 pm Wednesday, October 23, 2019
In addition to bedbug treatment work currently taking place at the Chorey Park Apartments, the Suffolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority has created a bedbug policy up for federal review and board adoption.
Dennis Gray of Accurid Pest Solutions said the company has treated 21 units so far, with eight of those the heavily infested units. He said in follow-up inspections of seven of the eight units, none of them had any living bedbugs in them.
Gray said the units heavily infested were getting two inspections about 10 to 15 days apart from the initial treatment. Accurid has three different types of devices in those units to let it know whether there were still living bedbugs in them. They are installed underneath the legs of the sofas, chairs and the bed frame.
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“This basically tells us a story,” Gray said. “One of the devices has an inner and outer ring. If we come back and check that device (under the bed), and we find that there are bedbugs on the inner ring, that tells us that we’ve got some work to do with the bedbugs. They’re coming from the bed. If we find that they’re trapped on the outer ring, then that tells us that they’re coming from the apartment itself. Same thing on the chair and the sofa.”
He said the treatment of the first-floor units at Chorey Park would be complete Wednesday and then it would start treating second floor apartments Thursday.
Gray said Accurid also has conducted a “Bedbug 101” class for all of the residents, with 100-percent participation from all of the residents on the first two floors.
He said this was to educate them on what bedbugs are, where they come from, how they can better protect themselves inside and outside of their apartment, and why they should report bedbugs as soon as they suspect an issue. Gray is providing residents with literature to reiterate these points, and residents can watch a video if they missed the presentation.
Gray said he expects to have more data to provide the board at its next meeting in November. His office is keeping spreadsheets that will note the date each apartment was inspected, the date it was treated, the date of the follow-up inspection, and all of the findings, including whether dead or live bedbugs were found.
“My passing through the halls, I’ve had a lot of positive feedback from the residents that were on the first floor,” Gray said, “really happy about the treatment that they received.”
David Bryant, who lives on the fourth floor, said at this time last year, he saw numerous bedbugs on the walls at night “full of blood.” Now, he said he doesn’t have bedbugs in his apartment, and “the treatment has made a huge difference.”
In addition, Housing Operations Director Michell Layne presented the board with a proposed bedbug policy that will be brought to the board for a vote next month.
As required by U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development policy, there has to be a 30-day comment period on the policy, which can be reviewed at SRHA’s office at 530 E. Pinner St., Chorey Park Apartments at 804 W. Constance Road, Cypress Manor/Parker Riddick Apartments at 93 Stacey Drive, Colander Bishop Meadows Apartments at 925 Brook Ave. and Hoffler Apartments at 2210 E. Washington St. The policy can also be viewed on the SRHA website at suffolkrha.org.
Layne said the authority’s responsibility under the proposed policy would be to provide training to staff on “the identification, prevention and eradication of bedbugs,” as well as educate new and existing residents on ways to prevent and detect bedbugs and contract with a qualified pest control company to treat bedbugs on an as-needed basis. The authority will also maintain written records of reports and incidents of bedbugs, with those indicating the times, dates and location of such incidents.
A report of bedbugs would mean the authority would make contact with the resident within 24 hours to give that person information about controlling and preventing bedbugs and provide the resident with measures that person can take before an inspection takes place.
Following the report, the authority or a qualified third party will inspect the apartment. If the inspection confirms the presence of bedbugs in the apartment, authority staff will give it a heat treatment, and, if necessary, have a licensed pest control company treat the infestation.
“The length, method and extent of the treatment will depend on the severity and complexity of the infestation, and the level of cooperation of the residents,” the policy states. “The resident may expect treatment to begin as soon as possible depending on the form of treatment and/or the availability of the staff/contractor.”
Residents will be told that there could be multiple treatments that could take several weeks to complete, according to the proposed policy.
Any apartment suspected of having bedbug infestation that cannot be verified will get re-inspected “over the next several months.”
The policy states the authority will not charge residents to treat a bedbug issue, but they will be charged a fee if their apartment is not ready on the day it is to be treated. It also states that residents are “strongly encouraged” to report bedbug infestations immediately. It states that “any willful failure on the part of a resident to report a bedbug infestation may result in adverse action taken against the resident, up to and including lease termination.”