The bedbug infestation: Where Seattle ranks on list of worst cities

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Bed Bugs

From wikimedia.

SEATTLE — It’s safe to say bedbugs are some of the creepiest, crawliest, skin-tingliest insects on the planet.

And if you don’t like creepy, you’ll want to stay away from Chicago.

The Windy City ranked highest among Orkin’s list of Bedbug Cities for all of last year, meaning more homes and apartments were treated for be bugs in Chicago than any other city in the country. Chicago’s problem is so bad, the city council passed an ordinance requiring condo associations to have a formal management plan in place for detection and treatment of the pests.

According to Orkin, the Top 10 worst cities for bedbugs are:

  1. Chicago
  2. Los Angeles
  3. Columbus, Ohio
  4. Detroit
  5. Cincinnati
  6. Cleveland/Akron/Canton
  7. Dayton
  8. Washington D.C.
  9. Denver
  10. Indianapolis

Seattle ranked number 18 on the list, dropping five spots from the previous year. Surprisingly, Seattle is only one spot behind New York City, a notorious center to one of the nation’s worst pests.

According to Orkin, cities across the Midwest and south made some of the biggest jumps in severity of problems. Sprinfield, Ill., Pittsburgh and Asheville, S.C. all made notable jumps on the bed bug list.

Orkin said that bedbug problems continue to worsen, as Orkin’s parent company saw a 20 percent jump in bedbug business in 2013.

Bedbugs do not spread disease, but studies have shown their presence can have serious “mental and physical health consequences” on the resident in bed bug infested home.

Orkin offered these tips to avoiding bed bugs:

  • Inspect your home for signs of bed bugs regularly.
  • Decrease clutter around your home – this will make bed bug inspections and detection much easier.
  • Dry potentially infested bed linens, curtains and stuffed animals on the hottest temperature allowed for fabric.
  • Before bringing second-hand furniture into your home, closely inspect it for any signs of bed bugs and quarantine it for a period of time before bringing it into your rooms. Also, keep in mind that there is always a potential for bed bug activity, even if you don’t find any signs.

For more on Orkin’s list, click here.

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