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MfD: Czech towns facing invasion of bedbugs

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Prague, April 26 (CTK) – Bedbugs have invaded Czech towns, including quite rich neighbourhoods, while the worst situation is in Most, north Bohemia, where these parasites have been reported in two-thirds of houses, daily Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD) writes yesterday.

Cleaning and disinfestation firms are working in full swing in Most, which has become a “lucrative” area for their business.

The owner of one of such firms, Jiri Maria Sieber, says he cleans up to 40 flats in Most a day. He considers the structure of the Most inhabitants with a high share of the socially weak and deprived the main reason for the bedbug spread.

Up to 60 percent of all houses in Most have been contaminated, according to estimates, Petr Prokes, spokesman for a housing cooperative, which administers thousands of flats in this town, told MfD.

The situation in Most is really extreme, however, the tiny parasites threaten other localities in the Czech Republic as well, mainly in the Liberec (north Bohemia) and Plzen (west Bohemia) regions as well as in Brno, the second largest town of the country.

MfD writes that bedbugs are mostly associated with bad sanitary conditions in cheap hostels, but they can appear in luxurious hotels as well. They survive in wooden bed frames, of sofa and armchair upholstery and in wall crevices. People can also bring bedbugs into their dwellings in luggage, clothes and furniture.

In the past, the regional sanitary stations’ inspectors registered data on the bedbug incidence, but now they do not have access to private houses. This is why there is no central bedbug map, unlike ticks that are carefully mapped in the country, MfD writes.

It says that not only the Czech Republic, but the whole of Europe faces a rising bedbug incidence.

National Referential Laboratory for Disinfestation head Frantisek Rettich blames the European Union’s (EU) regulation for this. “A couple of years ago, there were efficient means killing bedbugs in the market, but Brussels banned them because of their toxicity and in order to protect the environment,” he told MfD.

He says he is convinced that these banned insecticides would be safe and efficient if used by professionals.

Other reasons for the dramatic increase in the bedbug population is their high resistance and the irresponsible approach of some accommodation facilities’ owners, MfD says.

People sometimes try to get rid of bedbugs on their own with preparations bought in drugstores or even smoke bombs. However, nothing but a professional intervention can help fight this insect, Zdenka Galkova, from the State Health Institute (SZU), said.

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