Bedbug complaints in Metro Vancouver, which first started in 2003 with 40 complaints, have doubled each year for the past five years, said local expert Shelley Beaudet.
That means there were:
40 bed bug complaints in 2003,
80 in 2004,
160 in 2005,
320 in 2006,
640 in 2007, and
1280 in 2008.
That’s a total of 2,520 in five years. And I imagine those are just the official complaints. I would guess most bed bug cases never get officially reported by fearful tenants, their landlords, or homeowners.
When buildings like the one in Pendrell Street, described in this article, have 114 units and are 80% infested (that’s 91 infested units), it’s hard to believe the numbers aren’t even higher.
They will be soon, if this keeps up at the current rate: we can expect
2,560 complaints in 2009
5,120 in 2010 (just in time for the Vancouver Olympics!), and a whopping
10,240 official bed bug complaints in three years’ time, in 2011.
Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.
Vancouver needs to aggressively treat this problem, especially in the besieged and densely populated Downtown Eastside community.
There is some hope in that developers are beginning to respond to this problem. The article mentions the new RainCity development going up in Vancouver which will have a built-in sauna for decontaminating infested items.
The Vancouver Sun also goes into the stress bed bugs cause:
[exterminator Mark Amery of Vancouver Bed Bug Control Inc.] said living with bedbugs is stressful. “Usually [people] are sleep-deprived because the bedbugs eat at night,” Amery said. “Some people are crying on the phone. Some people are just done.”
Don’t we know it!