City School Steam-Cleans To Eliminate Bed Bugs

NJ.com
Thursday, February 9, 2012

TRENTON, NJ - After a series of bedbug sightings at the city's Daylight/Twilight High School on East Hanover Street, district officials say they are working to wipe them out and prevent any infestations.

After two sightings in different parts of the building last month, the district closed the school early last Thursday to conduct a steam-cleaning and kill the pests. Still, district facilities director Everett Collins yesterday confirmed there were two additional sightings this week.

"The unfortunate thing about the bedbug is you can fumigate, but the next day a student could come in and bring a fresh one," Collins said. "Unfortunately, that's what's occurring at this facility."

In connection with the original sightings last month, Collins said the district has identified two students whose homes had bedbugs.

"We kept those students out of school with home instructional material while the situation was eradicated," he said. "Once it's been eradicated and we get proof of that, we'll allow the students back in the school."

Whenever the district manages to identify students who have brought bedbugs into school from home, he said, officials notify the city's Health & Human Services Department, which works with landlords and homeowners to mitigate the problem.

The district is now trying to find out where the new bedbugs came from, Collins said.
"Any person can bring in another bedbug, so it's an ongoing process," he said.

In addition to steam-cleaning, he said, the district uses a citrus-based disinfecting solution to wipe down surfaces in any parts of the building where bedbugs have been detected.