Along with the warm weather throughout our route network comes an increase in bugs that we see at our layover hotels. One very particular type of bug that we should all be very concerned about is the bed bug.
No matter whether you’re on a layover, overnighting for training, or on a personal vacation, it’s always a best practice to inspect your room for signs of bed bugs as soon as you get to your room. Despite their name, bed bugs do not live in bed—they only eat there. During the day they hide in cracks and crevices (the size of a credit card or less) of furniture. Adult bugs are about the size of an apple seed and are visible to the naked eye.
First Things First–Check Your Room
- Pull back a sheet corner on the bed and check for signs of bugs. Look for brown/black dot stains on the mattress and possibly molted bed bug skins
- Check the areas where the mattress rests on the box spring, inside any folds or under buttons or piping
- Take a close look at the headboard, picture frames and nightstands for any sign of hiding bugs
- Check in books or hotel literature around the bed. Bed bugs have been found on index tabs in the in-room bible.
- Bed bugs can also be detected by their characteristic smell of rotting raspberries
Help, I Found Bed Bugs In My Room!
If you find bed bugs upon check in or at any time during your stay, notify the front desk staff immediately and move to another room. Report the incident on a Flight Attendant Incident Report and fill out a report on CrewCare (http://www.alaskaaircrew.com). CrewCare reports are forwarded to management and your AFA Hotel Committee Members.
More About Bed Bugs
The United States Environmental Protection Agency has some great resources and information about bed bugs available at http://www2.epa.gov/bedbugs.
Your MEC – Jeffrey Peterson, Brian Palmer, Yvette Gesch, Becky Strachan, Laura Masserant, Cathy Gwynn, Sandra Morrow, Stephen Couckuyt, MEC Hotel Committee Chairperson Laura Hinojosa and MEC Air Safety, Health, & Security Chairperson Seth Heiple