WASHINGTON (FOX 5 DC) - Washington D.C. is one the top cities for bed bugs in the country according to pest control company, Orkin. Orkin released their list of the top 50 Bed Bug Cities on Wednesday.
Baltimore reportedly ranks number 1 for the third year in a row. D.C. takes the number 2 spot, followed by Chicago, Los Angeles, and Columbus, Ohio.
Orkin says they compile their list based on treatment data from the metro areas where Orkin performed the most bed bug treatments from December 1, 2017 – November 30, 2018. The ranking includes both residential and commercial treatments.
The pest control company says New York City moved up two spots, while Atlanta and Philadelphia joined the top 10, replacing San Francisco and Dallas, respectively.
Houston dropped nine positions, while Greenville, S.C., rose seven positions, entering the top 20.
“Bed bugs are the number one urban pest in many cities today,” said Orkin entomologist Chelle Hartzer.
Five cities were moved into the top 50 for 2018, including Lansing, Mich., Orlando, Fla., Davenport, Iowa, Ft. Wayne, Ind. and Youngstown, Ohio.
Orkin says cleanliness doesn't have so much an impact on bed bugs. They just like being able to hop from place to place.
“They are master hitchhikers, so no one is immune. Sanitation has nothing to do with prevention: from public transit to five-star resorts, bed bugs have been and can be found everywhere humans are," said Hartzer.
Here is the full list:
New York (+2)
San Francisco (-3)
Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (+2)
Norfolk, Va. (+2)
Richmond, Va. (-1)
Greenville, S.C. (+7)
Grand Rapids, Mich. (+3)
Buffalo, N.Y. (-1)
Knoxville, Tenn. (-1)
Nashville, Tenn. (-1)
Champaign, Ill. (+2)
Lansing, Mich. (new to list)
Tampa, Fla. (+14)
Greensboro, N.C. (+10)
Omaha, Neb. (+2)
Las Vegas (+5)
Orlando, Fla. (new to list)
Davenport, Ill. (new to list)
Hartford, Conn. (-13)
Cedar Rapids, Iowa (-4)
Dayton, Ohio (-11)
Flint, Mich. (-9)
Wayne, Ind. (new to list)
San Diego (-8)
Youngstown, Ohio (new to list)
Here are proactive tips Orkin recommends for homeowners and travelers:
Inspect your home for signs of bed bugs regularly. Check the places where bed bugs hide during the day, including mattress tags and seams, and behind baseboards, headboards, electrical outlets and picture frames.
Decrease clutter around your home to make it easier to spot bed bugs on your own or during professional inspections.
Inspect all secondhand furniture before bringing it inside your home. This is a common way for bed bugs to be introduced into homes.
Dry potentially infested bed linens, curtains and stuffed animals on the hottest temperature allowed for the fabric.
During travel, remember the acronym S.L.E.E.P. to inspect for bed bugs:
Survey the hotel room for signs of an infestation. Be on the lookout for tiny, ink-colored stains on mattress seams, in soft furniture and behind headboards.
Lift and look in bed bug hiding spots: the mattress, box spring and other furniture, as well as behind baseboards, pictures and even torn wallpaper.
Elevate luggage away from the bed and wall. The safest places are in the bathroom or on counters.
Examine your luggage carefully while repacking and once you return home from a trip. Always store luggage away from the bed.
Place all dryer-safe clothing from your luggage in the dryer for at least 15 minutes at the highest setting after you return home.
For more information about bed bug prevention, visit Orkin.com. You can also find 100 facts about bed bugs in Orkin’s bed bug e-book: “100 Reasons Why Bed Bugs Are Freaky – and Fascinating” and additional detection tips in Orkin’s video on “How to Check for Bed Bugs in Hotel Rooms.”