Published at Sunday, September 09th, 2018 - 05:24:44 AM. Bedding. By Gretchen Arnold.
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."
If you‘re in the hospitality industry, this is one website you don‘t want to find yourself on. BedbugRegistry.com is a free public database that encourages people to report bed bug experiences, specifically at hotels. There‘s a quick reporting form for listing the hotel name and street address which is translated into a dot-covered map of the U.S. showing the locations of each reported infestation. A list of the hotels and other infestation sites is provided to warn travelers. What the site doesn‘t do is verify reports, nor does it indicate when a hotel has successfully remedied the problem. The old adage there‘s no such thing as bad publicity doesn‘t carry any credence with hoteliers. They know that even a whispered rumor can have a disastrous effect on business. Websites that detail horror-laced reports of being eaten alive by bed bugs during an overnight stay in a hotel or motel play on growing public hysteria about these blood-sucking parasites. Fanned by a blitz of media attention, an accusation can instantly damage a hotel‘s hard-earned reputation and frighten away guests.
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