Bedbug complaints up 7 percent in NYC

January 11, 2011 11:10AM

Bedbugs are here to stay, at least for now, statistics from the city’s
Department of Housing, Preservation and Development show. Residential
bedbug complaints
in New York City climbed 7 percent during 2010, the
Wall Street Journal reported. In 2010, there were 4,846 violations and
13,472 complaints, up from 4,811 and 12,594 in 2009. According to Louis
Sorkin, an entomologist with the American Museum of Natural History,
there are many more infestations than complaints. “Tons of people that
have infestations don’t say anything and, if they are in apartments, the
people next door are the ones with a complaint finally,” he told the Journal.  “They may not file a complaint, but they may go through the proper channels and tell the landlord or co-op board or condo owner.” In New York, bedbug complaints are registered with the city’s 311 non-emergency hotline. The landlord is notified and the department contacts the tenant to confirm before making a site visit, where a city inspector will inspect the home. If bedbugs are found, a violation is issued. Sorkin predicts that the situation may deteriorate in 2011. “Each year it’s always a little worse than the year before, because not everyone is on the bedbug bandwagon,” he said. “There’s not an easy way to get rid of bedbugs.” [WSJ]