Published at Sunday, September 09th, 2018 - 05:14:35 AM. Bedding. By Doreen Allison.
The resurgence of bed bugs has created a particularly vexing problem for the hospitality industry. Rooms that were pest-free one night can be infected by a guest the next. Legal experts have noticed a boom in bed bug litigation with guests suing hotels for millions of dollars. "Not only can a hotel get a terrible reputation for allowing the creepy crawly bed buddies to exist, but they can also lose out on a lot of dough," wrote a blogger on HotelChatter.com. Some lawyers are actually trawling for bed bug clients. A notice on InjuryBoard.com reads: "If you have been the victim of bed bug infestation, it may be important to contact an attorney who can help you protect your legal rights."
"Most hotel chains don‘t keep track because the number is so insignificant," said Joe McInerney of the American Hotel & Lodging Association said at the 2006 International Bed Bug Symposium when asked about the growing number of bed bug complaints in the hospitality industry. He noted that there are more than 4.4 million hotel rooms in the U.S., adding "you could count the number of cases per day on one or two hands." Yet according to a 2004 survey of pest control professionals by Pest Control Technology magazine, hotels and motels were the most common sites of bed bug infestations, accounting for more than one-third of bed bug complaints. In a recent survey, one company reported that 24% of their 700 client hotels required bed bug treatments between 2002 and 2006. Brooke Ferencsik, spokesman for popular hotel review site TripAdvisor.com told USA Today, "We get a steady stream of bed bug reports and have hundreds of reviews" mentioning them. "Even if travelers aren‘t experiencing [bed bugs], they‘re becoming more aware and are looking out for them."
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