Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

Bedbugs found in the Reagan Building

By Ed O'Keefe


The Ronald Reagan Building houses thousands of federal workers, and, recently, a few bedbugs (James M Thresher/Post)

Updated 6:12 p.m. ET
Two areas of the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center infiltrated by bedbugs will be treated by pest control experts on Tuesday, five days after the critters were found, according to officials.

Juvenile bed bugs were found Thursday in an office tower occupied by the U.S. Agency for International Development and a nearby closet, the agency said. Pest control experts inspected the affected areas on Friday and planned to treat the areas with an aerosol, steam and liquid mixture on Tuesday.

USAID scheduled the treatment for Tuesday after clearing personnel and furniture from the area and ensuring the bugs had not spread to other offices, a spokeswoman said.

"GSA and USAID are working proactively to eradicate the pests and prevent their spread to other areas of the building," the agencies said in a joint statement.

Workers will be able to reoccupy the affected offices four hours after they are treated and pest control experts will reinspect the area with specially trained dogs in three weeks, USAID said.

Employees learned of the bedbugs and plans to treat the affected areas in an e-mail sent Thursday (see below).

The Reagan building is located in downtown Washington and is one of the largest federal installations in the country. It also houses offices of the Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. EPA offices are bedbug-free, according to a spokesman.

Bedbugs are blood-feeders that do not transmit diseases, but can cause allergic reactions and infections. The critters are turning up in all sorts of places across the country, including movie theaters, radio studios, newsrooms and apartment buildings.

Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

E-MAIL SENT TO USAID STAFFERS:

USAID/W Notice
INFORMATION AA/M
09/30/2010

E X E C U T I V E M E S S A G E

Subject: Pest Control in the RRB

This message is to inform you of an item of concern related to an isolated population
of pests that were discovered in the RRB. In one single office suite in the USAID
office tower, juvenile bed bugs have been identified. We have no evidence that they
are present in any other location. Nevertheless, on Friday, October 1st at 10:00, GSA
will be utilizing a professional pest control service, including a specialized K-9 team, to
inspect this USAID office space. GSA will also be investigating adjacent areas, janitorial
closets, and restroom facilities to identify any additional infestation areas.

We ask that, in light of this announcement, you read the attached information for your
general education. Please help us all share responsibility in managing this issue in the future
by paying special attention to the fourth item listed in the attached document, entitled
"PREVENTION." This section is included in order to help you understand and prevent
any future Bed Bug activity.

USAID will continue to be proactive in protecting our employees by working with GSA
to deal with this isolated case.

If you have questions or suspect any additional pest activity in your areas, please contact
Peter Garcia, M/MS/FMD, (202) XXX-XXXX.

RELATED: Finding new weapons to kill bedbugs

Follow The Federal Eye on Twitter | Submit your news tips here

By Ed O'Keefe  | October 4, 2010; 10:16 AM ET
Categories:  Agencies and Departments, Workplace Issues  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Federal manager of the year awarded
Next: Why did federal health-care costs increase?

Comments

hrmm... blood sucking parasites in the reagan building. that sums up the years reagan was in the white house too.

Posted by: MarilynManson | October 4, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

As a federal worker, I am outraged. All federal workers in the DC area should be given a day off so that their offices can be fumigated or otherwise inspected and treated. If this takes more than a day to complete, additional time off is warranted. We should be taking this issue seriously.

Posted by: ShovelPlease | October 4, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

As a federal tax payer who works in the private sector, I urge you not to consider giving federal employees additonal time off. There are plenty of exterminators that will be working on Columbus Day.

Posted by: BMSBKiller | October 4, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Bedbugs, Federal offices, and Reagan who needs comedy writers.

Posted by: whocares666 | October 4, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

BMSBKiller- So you think that just because you are a tax payer that federal employees should be subjected to working in the infestation for 5 days and running an incredibly high risk of carrying those bugs home with them and dealing with infestataions in their homes?!?! Get a life.

Posted by: McCarthy911 | October 4, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Wasn't the building already full of parasites?

Posted by: brewstercounty | October 4, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Imagine that!!
Bedbugs where most of the sleeepng goes on.
Give em the days off, same amount of work will get done.

Posted by: myword1 | October 4, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Actually, my above post was meant as a joke. (Though I am a federal worker.) I assume the other postings were meant with good humor also.

Posted by: ShovelPlease | October 4, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

They don't carry any disease. It's like having ants in your kitchen. Fumigate and continue working. Day off?? You're kidding. The roaches and rats that surround urban workers are more dangerous than the bed bugs.

Posted by: RedinAlexandria | October 4, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

They don't carry any disease. It's like having ants in your kitchen. Fumigate and continue working. Day off?? You're kidding. The roaches and rats that surround urban workers are more dangerous than the bed bugs.

Posted by: RedinAlexandria | October 4, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Bwaaaahaaaahaaa!

Perhaps if we cut taxes for the upper 2% of income earners that will solve the problem. :-)

Posted by: southernbeale | October 4, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

"As a federal tax payer who works in the private sector, I urge you not to consider giving federal employees additonal time off. There are plenty of exterminators that will be working on Columbus Day.

Posted by: BMSBKiller | October 4, 2010 1:18 PM"

*******************************************

... and may they invade where you work! Then let's see how quickly YOU will take the day off.

Posted by: gitouttahere | October 4, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Obameh needs to do two things:
1. Blame Bush
2. Establish a Bed Bug Czar

Or perhaps appoint a bipartisan Blue Ribbon Panel and investigate - anyways, it will give him a chance to ask for more stimulus money.

Posted by: CubsFan | October 4, 2010 5:11 PM | Report abuse

"It's like having ants in your kitchen. Fumigate and continue working."

This is nonsense. Bedbugs create far more discomfort, anxiety, lost productivity, inconvenience, and expense than ants. Further, fumigation is a completely ineffective (and even counterproductive) treatment. In fact, resolving this infestation will require multiple painstaking treatments over time and extensive cooperation and problem-solving from all parties involved.

I urgently hope GSA is attacking the infestation aggressively as my husband's office is in another part of the building. We suffered miserably from a bedbug infestation several years ago and have much at stake if this infestation spreads.

I might suggest, though, that USAID invite Petula Dvorak to share their office space as she creates her next column. Perhaps it should be a sleep-over.

Posted by: 20bsy08 | October 4, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

Ronnie's legacy...

Posted by: DecafDrinker | October 4, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company