During this pandemic we have received a lot of business dealing with sanitizing and disinfecting services and items at schools daycares senior homes etc. One thing we’ve recently encountered is bed bugs so we reached out to a partner company of ours to get some advice on teaching our employees on how to deal with bed bugs when they come across them.
Of course this is not very common but it happens from time to time because we’ve learned that bed bugs are huge problem in the United States and specifically in the area where our company services clients Tulsa,OK .
Weather it’s a disinfection service or just a maid cleaning service , we found that this can be really common no matter what kind of cleaning services you’re dealing with as long as you’re in people’s offices homes or facilities with chairs couches or any kind of other furniture you’re definitely going to run into bed bugs, not a matter of if but when.
Now ! How did we come to deal with bed bugs well there’s a few ways these situations can occur one way is maybe one of your employees brought them into a client’s house and did it unknowingly.
Another way is that the client already had them and didn’t know. And for whatever reason didn’t think to tell the cleaning crew that they’ve been dealing with them.
Another reason is that a client or a cleaning staff misidentified the bug. Maybe they thought it was an ant or a small roach nevertheless it was a bed bug.
So as a non-pest control technician here are some things that you can do if you yourself come across bed bugs whether you’re a supervisor or in the client’s home and found them.
As the owner or supervisor have a plan or in case of emergency. This can be just a protocol that you do if whether the client complains that they have bed bugs passed due to your cleaning crew or if your cleaning crew themselves discover a pest on the premises.
- Before contracts are signed or agreements are made it is best to give a disclaimer that you’re not pest control professionals. So this will eliminate any confusion on what job your cleaning crew are supposed to do This can sometimes get confusing because clients are customers are under assumption a lot of the times that dirt filth and unorganization is the cause of pests This is not always the case. This is mostly never the case .The pest did not happen to find out that this client or home was dirty and then decided to come by , rather a pest just happened to find its way inside this home and maybe filth and dirt can helped itself to survive and reproduced but it was not the cause.
- Recommend to your clients that along with their cleaning sanitizing or maid services recommend that they have a go-to pest control service or company on hand.Sometimes it may be too late if you don’t have ongoing pest control but everyday counts so once you do discover you have a pest problem getting somebody quick as possible to deal with the problem is the best to controlling and infestation before it gets out of hand.
- Another recommendation we would suggest is let your staff familiarize themselves with pictures of different kinds of roaches and bed bugs and common pests. This way if they can see it they know that it might be a common problem that could be easily dealt with versus a customer freaking out over a bed bug when , coming to find out it was just a common pest wondering in for food.
- Let your clients know what they found. This can be hard because there is a thinking out there that if you tell the customer that the cleaner or maid found some sort of a pest that it was their fault they brought it and so now you as a cleaning company are held liable but that’s life and this is business. As a honorable owner and company using integrity to let them know that you found something maybe recommend a pest control service and keep it movin.
Now when it comes to bed bugs specifically there’s things that your staff can do to protect themselves from contracting bugs from the areas or places they’re cleaning such as :
- Leaving your purse and backpacks in the vehicle.
- Leave any sweatshirt , hats, gloves, coats and jackets in your vehicle .Don’t bring them into the area of your cleaning.
- Again make sure your staff can identify the difference between a roach, bed bug and a ant.
- Have some pure Isopropyl- alcohol handy.
Alcohol is not always recommended for dealing with bed bugs but for a novice, this is something you can use in isolated situations. You can spray a little bit here and there on a mattress or box spring you find any bed bugs on now remember this will not eliminate the problem completely but it will control and isolate them to a specific area.
Make sure there’s no open flames when using.
In conclusion always seek a pest control professional before experimenting or doing anything yourselves and keep communication open between you and your staff and your clients.cThis is always the best approach when dealing with pests and the possibility of encountering them in your industry always.