Council outlines what to do if you get an outbreak of bedbugs

An outbreak of bedbugs in France has sparked concerns about them spreading in communities here and on London transport. Credit: PA Images

A council has explained what people can expect if they have an outbreak of bedbugs in their homes.

Luton Council warns on its website that it does not have limitless resources to tackle the problem.

London mayor Sadiq Khan has said there is real concern about the threat of France's recent bedbug outbreak spreading to London's public transport.

Bedbugs have been reported across France, with many cases in Paris.

Bedbug bites can be raised, itchy and often in a line or grouped together. Credit: NHS

Bedbugs feed on blood by biting people, creating wounds that can be itchy but do not usually cause other health problems.

The insects often live on furniture or bedding and can spread by being on clothes or luggage.

Luton Borough Council said: "This national bedbug problem has not missed Luton. The Pest Control Service is currently receiving an alarming number of bedbug jobs on a weekly basis." 

The council said while the bedbug was not known to be a carrier of disease, the council did recognise the pest was an "obnoxious" creature to share a home with.

Luton Town Hall Credit: ITV Anglia

It wants homeowners to be ready to cooperate with council officers who are sent to treat their homes and warned of the scale of the measures needed to tackle an infestation.

It said officers would need:

  • access to all areas that need treating – all bedrooms and beds and adjacent areas;

  • beds must have been stripped and bedcovers put into sealed bin liners and placed in the bath for storage. Pay attention to the draws often built into divan beds which must also be emptied;

  • all wardrobes, drawers and bookcases to be emptied and contents placed in sealed bin liners and stored in the bath;

  • all furniture to be pulled away from the walls for access to the back of the furniture and skirting;

  • all pictures and posters off the walls and available for inspection.

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