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ODA recommends a better way of bed bug control

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State and federal officials are alerting the public of an emerging concern regarding the control of bed bugs, especially when it involves pesticide products:

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Audio 01
Like the rest of the nation, Oregon is seeing an increase in the number of bed bug incidents around the state:

KHOKHAR:  “Mostly because of the population that we have, which is so mobile. So we have an individual who may be here and tomorrow may be in New York and the next day in Florida. So it’s something that once you are infected– your bag or your clothes or whatever– you can end up leaving a trail as you go.”  :18

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Oregon Department of Agriculture pesticide investigator Paul Khokhar (CO-karr) says bed bugs will bite, but they won’t spread any human diseases, therefore are not a threat to human health. What may be a threat to human health is exposure to pesticides if they are used improperly:

KHOKHAR:  “We always encourage individuals to contact pest control companies. This is not a pest that is usually controlled by homeowners.”  :08

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Many times, residents will decide to treat bed bug problems themselves. Sometimes that means misusing a pesticide product. Maybe it’s using an outdoor pesticide indoors, or using it at a higher rate than specified on the label. Whatever the case, bed bug control can be serious business and professional pest control companies probably have the experience and knowhow to do things properly. In Salem, I’m Bruce Pokarney.

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KHOKHAR says it’s best to call in the professional if you have a bed bug infestation:

“It’s always a good idea to call a few companies. They don’t charge to come out. They’ll come out and look at your situation and give you options. They may give you different control options that work for you. You may choose something that is a little less toxic. They may have some products that will be a little more agreeable for you and your household and your family.”  :18

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KHOKHAR says the persistence of bed bugs have resulted in some extreme cases where people have misused pesticide products:

“A lot of homeowners get frustrated. We’ve had occurrences where individuals are so frustrated that they can’t get rid of bedbugs that they actually put pesticides on their bodies, douse it in their hair, drenching their bed or furniture with pesticides and then sleeping on it just because the frustration is so high. They’ve’ had it for so long and they can’t get rid of it.”  :15

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