According to the Baltimore Sun (10/8/2008), most of the 64 students evacuated from the Dulaney Valley Apartments because some students had apartments infested with bed bugs were moved to a local Sheraton.
Now WBAL TV in Baltimore reports that some of those students have encountered bed bugs in the Sheraton:
A room at the Sheraton Hotel North in Towson has been affected by bedbugs, displacing two of the students, school officials said. Some students staying at the Dulaney Valley Apartments were moved to the hotel after bedbugs were found at that location in both July and September.
Goucher College officials said the Sheraton will have the rooms examined and the hotel will take the necessary measures to rid the room of bedbugs.
While it is certainly possible that one can encounter bed bugs anywhere (including any hotel room), it is also true that bed bugs are easily carried from place to place. This chain of events raises the question of whether Goucher students were instructed to and assisted in making sure they did not move bed bugs with them to the Sheraton. This article describes ways in which Stanford University attempts to halt the spread of bed bugs when students are evacuated from dorm rooms due to these pests.
I want to stress that it is impossible to know from the article whether students brought bed bugs to the Sheraton, or whether they encountered bed bugs already at the hotel. But the potential of moving bed bugs is something colleges should consider when evacuating students under such circumstances. The students’ experience also highlights the need for people to learn to search a hotel room for bed bugs before settling in.
Although people often come on the Bedbugger forums asking how they can move without transporting bed bugs, it is not an easy process. Some people will have their possessions treated with sulfuryl fluoride (such as Vikane[TM]) or thermal processes, at great cost, in order to avoid moving bed bugs.
Bed bugs can crawl into a person’s luggage or other items, or even crawl into clothing and be moved from place to place. Bed bug evacuees must take precautions when fleeing to hotels or other locations, in order to avoid infesting them.
Our FAQs on travel offer suggestions on not moving bed bugs from place to place.