More bed bug treatments in Lexington’s Ballard Griffith senior apartments

by nobugsonme on November 10, 2008 · 10 comments

in bed bug treatment, bed bugs, bed bugs and the elderly, bed bugs in apartments, bed bugs in public housing, kentucky, lexington

More on the bed bug situation in the Ballard Griffith senior complex in Lexington, Kentucky, where the 55-and-older residents have been suffering from bed bug bites for 2 years now.

Two years!

According to this news report from Lex18, 86 of over 300 units are infested. Today, two pest control firms are going door to door spraying in the complex. A second news report from WTVQ clarifies that every unit in the 317 unit complex, as well as offices, laundry rooms, and other common areas, will be sprayed. A follow-up treatment will occur in mid-December. They hope that clears the problem.

WTVQ also notes that the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Housing Authority, the Health Department and the Lexington Mayor’s office all had to get involved to make this happen. The Health Dept. has inspected the building a few times since 2007, most recently a search of every unit which found evidence in those 86 units (27% of the apartments).

The treatment is being done by All Rite Pest Control and Truly Nolen Pest Control.

I note that PCOs often tell us that a follow-up in two weeks is necessary. This second treatment sounds like it is around 5 weeks away. With so many infested units, it is hard to eliminate a problem. I really do hope the problem is solved because the tenants are suffering physically, financially, and (one guesses) psychologically, as so many do with bed bugs. And the fact that some tenants have had them for two years is shameful.

Here’s an earlier story from September on the Ballard Griffith situation, and one from last week on how the complex was used as a local polling place.

And remember, citizens of Lexington-Fayette County: last year, the local health department told the media it wanted residents of apartment buildings who had bed bugs to call them. Here’s the number again, in case that’s you:

If you live in an apartment complex and suspect there are bed bugs. You are urged to call the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department at (859) 231-9791

1 nobugsonme November 11, 2008 at 12:57 pm

Update: a video from WKYT today includes interviews with local health dept. official, a resident, and the daughter of a resident, who said residents were missing out on activities (cancelled due to fear of spreading bed bugs) and that visiting nurses and home assistants were not coming to work with residents due to the bed bug problem.

2 Jessica November 13, 2008 at 12:06 am

Hey Nobugs! I just wrote about this story, so it’s fresh in my mind and I couldn’t help but comment.

The thing that intrigues me most about this story is that the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Housing Authority, the Health Department, and the Mayor’s Office were all, eventually, compelled to become involved in treating the infestation. Yes, it took two years, and two years is entirely too long, but all three county departments DID get involved at some point. What was it that finally caught the attention of the decision makers in those departments and what was it that finally prompted them to act together to help these people?

If we can find out, we may be able to convince our own local government agencies to become involved. And that, I think, is one of the best ways to begin to tackle the bed bug issue in our country and beyond.

I’m going to do some digging, and I’ll keep you posted if I find anything.


3 bedbugjean November 19, 2008 at 1:15 pm

November 21st is the last treatment being done for these apartment in the first round of treatments. We were told the 2 PCO companies will be back after Thanksgiving. If that is true, my floor should be done again..the 2nd round.. on the Monday after Thanksgiving, as it goes by floors and this will be 2 weeks.

I am very clean, and my bedroom was infested with bed bugs. We have one apt on my floor which had to have EVERYTHING thrown out…it was gross. I am very upset by this because this apt was done 4 days after the rest of the floor was done!

I have found a couple of baby bed bugs, a couple of skins from bed bugs… What concerns me the most is if they keep tenants here who have neglected to comply or are extremely infested, what does that do to all our efforts to help get rid of these thins.

I am sick of platic bugs etc. I lost my bed and couch and living room chair last fall…and this has been going on in this place since 2005!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Finally the Health Dept stepped in after many complaints to senators, attorney general, mayor, congressman, aldermen, health dept etc. When it finally hit the media in Sept and October is probably what made things move and the last PCO was let go and the two mentioned above were hire. They are wonderful and 110% better than what they had before.

Thank you for listening…I am proactive with this issue. So glad I found this site.

4 nobugsonme November 19, 2008 at 6:12 pm


I am glad your follow-up is coming after 2 weeks, not in December (4-6 weeks?) as reported in the local media.

The good news is that your building is in the spotlight, the Health Dept. is involved, and everyone is watching. It could not be better for you, as tenants, IMHO. I would expect they can solve this problem, though it’s possible it may take more treatments and inspections.

And yes, the management needs to help people who need help to prep, and they need some kind of recourse with non-compliant tenants. That is not an easy situation and can really affect others.

5 nobugsonme November 21, 2008 at 12:17 pm

The community is now raising funds to help those who need them replace mattresses at the complex.

Pest control has been spraying apartments. During the process, some people’s mattresses were deemed irreplaceable.

Mayor Jim Newberry’s office says several faith organizations have now stepped in to help by donating thousands of dollars.

Clays Mill Road Baptist church alone raised more than $5,000 of the $15,000 raised so far.

Organizers say they will continue to take donations because more mattresses may need to be replaced.

Replaced or not, everyone in the building needs a good mattress encasement. If bed bugs are on the mattress, there are encasements designed and tested to seal them in. If bed bugs should reappear at a later date, encasements will ensure the mattress itself does not become reinfested.

6 nobugsonme December 1, 2008 at 3:08 am

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports donations of 10,000 pounds of pillows, sheets, and blankets were delivered to Ballard Griffiths residents Wednesday, to replace items thrown out by 100 residents.

7 bedbugjean December 17, 2008 at 1:04 pm

For an update on the situation here at Griffith-Ballard in Lexington, I would just like to say the 2nd spraying was completed yesterday. The 3rd spraying will be done in January sometime. The interval in between sprayings seems to be 3 1/2 weeks. By the time the 2nd spraying was done, most of us were feeling the results of eggs being hatched.

During the 2nd spraying I lost all my bedroom furniture…white particle board…which bed bugs love along with wicker. I did receive at that time new box spring and mattress and encasement covers for both, pillows and encasements covers for the pillows. I have not seen any sheets or blankets at all.

The 2 PCO companies who are doing our spraying etc are wonderful, polite and very accomadating. They even put the encasement covers on my new mattresses for me and set up the new bed frame for me. They also took pictures with a special camera and showed me what the bed bugs were doing and how the furniture was totally infested…it was gross!! The furniture was wrapped and taken out of the building.

So, now I have no bedroom or living room furniture, have lost clothes, nic nacs, bedding, mattresses, bed frame and headbooard, mirror, luggage, pocket books etc. The $$$ amount could be very high. Too bad I cannot claim it on my rental insurance!!

I live out of plastic bags, but at least now I have a very comfortable bed and have become a friend of 91% rubbing alcohol. One more spray and we will see how this goes. The Health Dept has also done their monthly inspection and will be back in January also. This has been a total shame as Management knew about this since 2005 with only 3 tenants. Goes to show you…

8 nobugsonme December 17, 2008 at 2:33 pm

Hi bedbugjean,

Thanks for updating us on the situation over there at Ballard-Griffith.

I am so sorry you are going through this. It is a common story — small, isolated infestations that grow throughout a building because they are not managed properly from the start.

I truly hope everything goes well with this and the next treatment, and that bed bugs are completely gone from your life soon.

9 withheld February 18, 2010 at 3:24 am

I am surprized the place didn’t get shut down? Even more surprized a lawyer hasn’t step up on this situation?

10 nobugsonme April 27, 2010 at 11:43 pm

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