Everyone wants to make their office environment as comfy as possible and snacking at your desk becomes second nature to many. However, for cockroaches, rodents and bed bugs, this can create their dream vacation resort! Read on to understand how bed bugs thrive and how you can work with employees to eliminate the problem before it becomes a significant issue.
Cleanliness Equals Compliance
The US Occupational Safety and Health Act requires employers to provide their empoyees with a work environment that is clean, hygenic and pest free. Bed bugs and other insects and rodents frequently spread disease and if their presence is not detected and dealt with in an efficent manner, it may be interpreted as a violation of the above federal law. If there is an infestation and your employees are talking about it, do not try to shush them but instead listen as they will have information regarding the extent of the problem. Also, if you try to limit these discussions remember the National Labor Relations Act says employers cannot prevent employees from discussing these issues. But working together gives you the best chance of getting to the root of the problem as soon as possible.
Where To Look
When food has been left out for a period of time or overnight, it is an invitation to insects including flies, cockroaches, rodents and other pests (including bed bugs) that may be hungry. Make sure employees know they are expected to clean up directly afterwards and that any leftovers are in the fridge for no longer than seven days.
Another area to look for is water, bed bugs and other insects are attracted to roof leaks, pipes that are dripping or whenever there is a hard to identify musty smell. Remember, bed bugs and other creatures often prefer environments with a high-moisture content. It may also be indicative of another invisible threat, mold.
Another place to look for bugs and rodents (though not necessarily bed bugs) is any area where there is a draft. Any voids or cracks that are greater than one quarter inch in size offer up an ideal home base for these critters. Be sure to check under exterior doors and if you see any large holes designed for utilities and network cabling, speak to your IT team to have them seal the holes up.
Pest Control Tactics
Pest control issues can have an impact on even the cleanest office. If an employee notices a rodent or insect, the matter should be investigated by the building management team as soon as possible. In most cases, they can recommend a course of treatment once they have locted and identified the source. However, in some instances, the source of infestation that needs to be treated is not clear. When that is the situatuin it may be likely when the employees travel to the office, they are not always arriving alone. Insects like lice, fleas and bed bugs, travel by latching onto their human hosts. Similar to flu, these bugs are very contagious and just a single example can rapidly turn into a pandemic impacting the entire organization.
You may be fortunate in that a responsible employee who has been afflicted comes to you. Clearly, this situation deserves the utmost confidentiality and sensitivity. Make arrangements they can work from home or take paid leave for this situation to be addressed and resolved. However, sometimes an employee may come forward claiming a co-worker has an issue. Remember false accusations may be part of workplace bullying and perhaps, even, discrimination. Speak to the manager of the employee and see if they have witnessed similar evidence, only if the answer is affirmative should you approch the individual who has been afflicted. In private ask if they are the victim of a communicable condition and kindly explain it is your duty to make sure working conditions are safe for everyone. You can then inform the employee of their telecommuting or leave options.
Bed Bugs…A Serious Issue
Just one sighting of one of these bugs, just a fraction of an inch in length, can be the cause of an entire workplace having to shut down their operations until the matter has been dealt with. Amazingly, bed bugs can exist for more than 18 months without eating, having an employee work from home will not be enough. A specialist will have to be hired to visit the property with a bug sniffing dog. If the search shows anything, the next step is to fumigate the entire office building. In circumstances where an employee comes forward on a voluntary basis as a potential source of infestation, you may want to consider paying for the employees home to be fumigated as the cost of doing so may be beyond the budget of the employee. Depending on the extent of the infestation, an expert may recommend treatments that are less invasive such as steaming or freezing the hideouts used by bed bugs.
Desert Oasis Cleaning Services Offers Office Cleaning in Phoenix & Throughout The Valley.
To schedule commercial cleaning services in Phoenix, learn more about Desert Oasis’s commercial cleaning services, or to get a free industrial commercial cleaning services quote, use our contact form to submit a request or call Desert Oasis Cleaners today at 1-480-720-0907.
Our quality cleaning materials and experience mean we clean to a higher standard, which leads to better indoor air quality, fewer allergens and lower levels of bacteria creeping around the workplace, just waiting to infect your workforce or cause an accident. At Desert Oasis, we clean and sanitize everything, including the places that most other companies overlook.