New York’s Fifth Avenue Store has bed bugs

by nobugsonme on April 18, 2019 · 4 comments

in bed bugs, bed bugs in the workplace, new york city

According to Gothamist, the Apple Store on Fifth Avenue in New York City has bed bugs— and has had them for over a month. (Gothamist’s story is worth viewing if only for the revival of their intergalactic bed bug warfare imagery which we can’t reproduce here.)

The New York Post’s source suggests the bed bugs were spotted in employee-only areas like a manager’s office, but also in a public area, in a roped off table:

One worker said the issue has been going on for “nearly a month” and “Friday was the first day they acknowledged they found something.”

The employee said the issue started about three to four weeks ago during the overnight hours at the 24-hour store, which frequently has homeless visitors, when a table on the second floor was “cordoned off” because a bed bug was found, believed to have come from one of the homeless visitors.

Everyone is quick to blame the easy target. I can’t believe that after so many years, this is still the level of discourse around bed bugs and who to blame for their appearance.

Sure, bed bugs can be a particularly persistent problem for some homeless folks, who -— once having made contact with bed bugs —- may have more trouble getting rid of them, depending on access to showers, laundry facilities, and other factors.

However, anyone could have brought bed bugs into the store —- employees, managers, tourists, people who live nearby in fancy buildings, hipsters, and so on. Bed bugs don’t target people of lower social standing. They are just easier to deal with when you have more money.

Which does raise questions about why the Apple Store —- run by a big multinational corporation —- would wait a month to address such an issue?

Glad to hear the problem is being addressed. If you had any doubts whether spring has sprung, the appearance of bed bugs in public places is a good sign the warm weather is once again hastening their spread.


{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 David Cain April 18, 2019 at 11:12 am

You are definitely onto something there.

While bedbugs are not seasonal there is a tendency for people to respond more to the bites in warmer weather. In recent years in the UK this has not marked the coming of spring but the warm spurts between the “beast’s from the East’s”.

A keep pattern spotter soon realizes there is a 3 – 5 day lag between NY reports and London reports.

Unfortunately the reality of the maths is not as sexy as the “blame game” and any location with a footfall in the thousands per day is going to have regular issues with bedbugs, its a reality of keeping the doors open.

I do miss the blog.


2 Louis N Sorkin BCE April 18, 2019 at 11:26 am

Canine hit on 2 employee lockers, manager area and also on the roped off table area, employee’s sweater No reason to think that it’s only 1 introduction into the store. Molecular tests on the bugs would show if from same population. Definitely Apple took too long to respond.

3 nobugsonme April 21, 2019 at 1:19 pm

Thanks, Lou! All good points. This is a high traffic store and open 24 hours, so there’s a lot of potential for introductions from all sides.

4 nobugsonme April 21, 2019 at 1:20 pm

Thanks, David! I miss the blog too. Glad to hear I’m not the only one. There may be room for more posts in coming weeks.

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