ATLANTA, Georgia (WKBN) – Four Ohio regions have topped Orkin’s bedbug list this year.
Orkin has released its “Top 50 Bed Bug Cities list” for the past six years. The rankings are based on the number of bedbug treatments performed from December 1, 2015 – November 30, 2016, including residential and commercial treatments.
Columbus, Cincinnati and Dayton make the list, along with the Cleveland-Akron-Canton area, which ranked 13th. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania was ranked 24th.
Topping the list is the city of Baltimore, Maryland — the first time it has made the top five list, according to Orkin.
The rankings are as follows:
- Baltimore (+9)
- Washington, D.C. (+1)
- Chicago (-2)
- New York
- Columbus, Ohio
- Los Angeles (-4)
- Philadelphia (-3)
- San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose (+4)
- Richmond-Petersburg, Va. (-2)
- Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (-1)
- Cleveland-Akron-Canton, Ohio (-1)
- Indianapolis (+1)
- Dallas-Ft. Worth (-2)
- Atlanta (+3)
- Buffalo, N.Y. (+2)
- Charlotte, N.C. (-3)
- Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News, Va. (+10)
- Knoxville, Tenn. (+3)
- Denver (-4)
- Nashville, Tenn. (-1)
- Pittsburgh (+5)
- Greenville-Spartanburg, S.C.-Asheville, N.C. (-4)
- Phoenix (-3)
- Grand Rapids-Kalamazoo-Battle Creek, Mich. (+5)
- Boston (-3)
- Milwaukee (-3)
- Champaign-Springfield-Decatur, Ill. (+12)
- Hartford-New Haven, Conn. (+3)
- Dayton, Ohio (-4)
- Omaha, Neb. (+3)
- Seattle-Tacoma (-6)
- Tampa-St. Petersburg, Fla. (-4)
- Charleston-Huntington, W.Va. (-1)
- St. Louis (+3)
- Cedar Rapids-Waterloo-Dubuque, Iowa (+3)
- Myrtle Beach-Florence, S.C. (+11)
- Syracuse, N.Y. (+6)
- Louisville, Ky. (-2)
- Greensboro-High Point-Winston Salem, N.C.
- Lexington, Ky. (-10)
- Orlando-Daytona Beach-Melbourne, Fla. (-6)
- Kansas City, Mo. (-1)
- Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. (-3)
- Salt Lake City, Utah
- Honolulu, Hawaii
- Las Vegas
- Portland, Ore.
Orkin Entomologist and Director of Technical Services Dr. Ron Harrison said more people are affected by bed bugs than ever before.
“They were virtually unheard of in the U.S. 10 years ago,” Harrison said.
He said anyone can get bed bugs, because they easily travel from place to place on luggage, purses and other belongings. They can be picked up in apartments, hotels, and public places like movie theaters and libraries.
Orkin recommends the following tips to prevent the spread of bed bugs:
- Inspect your home for signs of bed bugs regularly. Check locations where bed bugs hide during the day, including mattress seams and behind baseboards, headboards, electrical outlets and picture frames.
- Decrease clutter around your home to make bed bug inspections and detection much easier.
- Inspect all secondhand furniture before bringing it inside your home.
- 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. Look for black or brown spots on any furniture.
- Lift and look in bed bug hiding spots: the mattress, box spring, bedskirt and other furniture, as well as behind baseboards, pictures and even torn wallpaper.
- Elevate luggage away from the bed and wall. The safest place is in the bathroom.
- Examine your luggage while repacking and once you return home from a trip.
- Place all dryer-safe clothing from your luggage in the dryer for at least 15 minutes at the highest setting after you return home.
Editor’s note: A previous version of this story left out Cincinnati in its list of Ohio regions. WKBN regrets the error.