132752

Canada  

Bedbugs infest library

Montreal's Grande Bibliotheque library says it's taking measures to bid good night to bedbugs and reassure users they are not at risk of any bites.

Executive director Danielle Chagnon said the library has been largely given the all-clear after a recent infestation of the bugs and that just a small part remained off limits Thursday.

Montreal's largest library never closed and services have been maintained since the outbreak came to light in late June and early July.

The tiny, apple seed-shaped bugs are usually active at night, feed on human blood and, although irritating, don't pose a major health risk.

There are no known cases of them transmitting infectious diseases.

"We're confident the situation is now over and users can feel secure and at ease when they come to the library," Chagnon said.

Several Canadian libraries have been dealing with bedbugs in recent years and it wasn't even the first time the Montreal institution has had an infestation.

But Chagnon said the number of critters was more than previously encountered and required more elaborate action.

The pest problem has meant the library's 300 fabric lounge chairs — containing material and stuffing ideal for the bedbugs to hide — have been placed in storage.

They were removed and replaced with hard plastic chairs, with a permanent solution to come.

Chagnon said an extermination company was hired quickly and has been making frequent inspections of the building as well reviewing protocols in place.

"The inspections will last as long as the problem isn't dealt with 100 per cent," she said.



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