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Norfolk firefighters battle bed bugs at five stations

Posted by Spencer Brown on

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) - The number of Norfolk fire stations with evidence of bed bugs jumped to five.

Fire officials say live bugs were found at Station 1 on Monticello Avenue and Station 13 in West Ocean View earlier this month. After that, inspectors took a closer look at all the stations and found evidence of bed bugs at three more locations.

One of the stations added to the list is Station 6 on Colley Avenue, where furniture was visible on the curb Monday.

"It has inconvenienced our members, but it has not stopped us from providing services to the citizens of Norfolk," said Battalion Chief Julian Williamson with the fire department.

At all of the stations, gear and clothing were bagged up, washed and dried.

The fire department is working with a pest control vendor to treat the current problem and prevent it from happening again. But bed bugs don't go away easily, mostly because it is hard to pinpoint the source.

"We respond to over 40,000 calls a year, and if you look around, there are a lot of buildings and places we going to," said Williamson. "These critters, if you know anything about them, they are hitchhikers. I can't say if it came from one station to one building."

Some stations received a heat treatment to kill the bugs. None of the employees reported having infestations at home.

By    Anne McNamara

  • Updated: Tuesday, October 22, 2013, 6:12 AM EDT
  • Published: Monday, October 21, 2013, 6:30 PM EDT
http://www.dailypress.com/news/top-list/dp-norfolk-firefighters-battle-bed-bugs-at-five-stations-20131022,0,7518741.storyX

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