LACONIA — A local landlord is now using diatomaceous earth to treat the bedbugs that continually pop up in his apartment houses throughout the city.
Diatomaceous earth is extremely finely ground seashells that is placed in electrical outlets and around floors. When and if a bedbug travels through it, the salt clings to its body and it dies.
"Bedbugs are an ongoing problem with every landlord and almost everyone who moves in already has them," said the landlord who didn't want to be identified. "I'm doing everything I possible can to get rid of them."
"You know, I have never, ever gone out and brought bedbugs into my home or my apartments," he said.
He said the city policy is that once bedbugs are reported to Deputy Fire Chief Shawn Riley, who is the city health officer, the landlord has 48 hours to respond and come up with a plan of action.
He said he and his managers spray for five consecutive weeks and use the same chemicals that the professional use.
The landlord said he also been accused of having bedbug in one of his buildings when he didn't. He explained that he has a no pet policy and one of his tenants brought in a cat.
When the tenant refused to get rid of the cat, he began eviction proceedings and within a day of being served the eviction paperwork, the same tenant reported to the city that he had bed bugs and he was forced to treat the apartment.
In previous interviews, Riley suggested that people who discover they have bed bugs should wash all of their linens in hot water as well as any clothing that may have been on the floor after the space has been treated.
He also suggested that people stay away from used furniture, especially that which is seen by the side of the road, because if it carries bud bugs they will gradually gradually travel to every piece of furniture in the house or apartment building.