Bed bug problem at Va. Beach motel


by David Ham

Posted on April 28, 2010 at 3:17 PM

Updated Wednesday, Apr 28 at 5:49 PM

Bed bugs at MacThrift Motor Inn

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VIRGINIA BEACH -- Seven rooms at a Va. Beach motel are closed due to bed bug infestation, health department officials say.

Someone filed a complaint about MacThrift Motor Inn at the Oceanfront, so the city's hotel taskforce, which consists of representatives from the Health Department, Code Enforcement and the Fire Department, went out and inspected the hotel on Wednesday.

Seven of the motel's 52 rooms have been taken offline due to bed bug infestation, said city spokeswoman Carissa Frasca.

Kelly Kennedy, who lives with her family at the motel, says it's been a problem off and on for the approximately two years she's lived at the motel.

"When I first moved in, I noticed that my daughter was breaking out a little bit, so I figured it was something like that," she said. "They're little black bugs crawling all over the bed and everything."

The motel owner is required to have a pest control operator treat those rooms before they can be used.  Management had no comment when 13News asked about the situation.

There was one bed bug complaint filed earlier this year, but it wasn't substantiated and one complaint filed in September 2009 that was substantiated, confirmed Frasca.

She said there were no complaints for 2008 and one complaint per year in 2007 and 2006, but she didn't know whether those complaints were substantiated.

Bed bugs can easily travel on a person's clothing or luggage and can make homes anywhere. However, with proper treatment, they are easily removed, Frasca noted.