Detroit ranks third of bedbug-infested cities

Sarah Rahal
The Detroit News

Detroit — Terminix released its 2017 ranking of the top 20 cities infested by bedbugs just in time for late-summer vacations and students returning to campuses. Based on service data, Detroit ranked third on the list following Cleveland (#1) and Cincinnati (#2). 



Terminix, a major provider of termite and pest control services in the United States based in Memphis, Tennesee, compiled the list from data at 300 Terminix branches across the country. The list ranks from their services between Jan. 1 to June 30. 

The list announced on Thursday includes the top 20 cities. For the full list, check online

  1.    Cleveland
  2.    Cincinnati
  3.    Detroit
  4.    Las Vegas
  5.    Denver
  6.    Houston
  7.    Phoenix
  8.    Indianapolis
  9.    Oklahoma City
  10.    Philadelphia

"The bedbug experts at Terminix say that bed bug infestations have significantly increased since the late 1990s, and while researchers are unsure of the exact causes, factors such as increased international travel and insecticide resistance likely bear some responsibility," according to a written release by Business Wire. 

There are also tips from Terminix on their website for customers on how to check for bedbugs at home and when traveling. Here are three Detroiters should know:


First, check travel reviews before visiting a hotel, and be careful of those with multiple reports of bedbugs. When you check into a hotel, check the mattress, headboard, bed frame and pictures for any signs of bed bugs.

Rather than storing luggage on the bed or floor, keep your luggage on the luggage rack.
Avoid storing clothes in dressers and hang clothes that can be hung.

Be aware 

There is a potential risk of bedbugs on bedroom furniture and fixtures, know potential bed bug hiding places in public spaces like movie theaters and taxis and always check for hitchhiking bed bugs on your suitcase. 

“Bedbugs are notoriously difficult to eradicate,” Paul Curtis, director, technical services at Terminix said in a release. “They can travel to new locations very easily—hitching a ride on clothing, handbags, suitcases and taxis, which can create substantial infestations in no time.”

Warning signs

According to Terminix, bedbugs are attracted to body warmth and exhaled breath of carbon dioxide which leads them to target sleeping hosts. 

Look for shedding, exoskeletons or shells of bed bugs, fecal stains on mattress and bedding, blood stains on sheets and pajamas

Bedbug bites on the skin look similar to those caused by fleas and mosquitoes. Telling which insect caused a bite might not be possible, according to Terminix. 

Some symptoms of a bedbug bites are raised, red welts, burning and itching,
a rash and straight lines of multiple bites. 

Bedbugs can live up to 12 months.