Dangers of Pest Infestations in Schools and Government Buildings
School and government buildings should always be perceived as safe, sanitary places. If pests like rodents, cockroaches, spiders, flies and mosquitoes are present, people may begin to worry about their health and safety in these public buildings.
How do pests affect public health?
According to the National Pest Management Industry Fact Sheet, pests affect public health by contaminating food, spreading diseases and causing allergens. In regards to pests and buildings, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that “the existence of cockroaches, rats, and mice mean that they can also be vectors for significant problems that affect health and well-being.” That’s why pest control is a serious concern for buildings like educational and municipal facilities.
Some pests, such as mosquitoes, can pose particular potential dangers to young children, as well as older adults, who may have underdeveloped or compromised immune systems.
“If transmitted, mosquito-borne diseases may possibly be more severe in the very young and the very old as a result of those immune system challenges,” says Stanton E. Cope, Ph.D., director of entomology and regulatory services for Terminix and 2016 American Mosquito Control Association President.
Since children attend schools and older adults are often in and around government buildings, keeping pests — mosquitoes in particular — under control on these properties is a matter of protecting the oldest and the youngest members of our society, as well as other groups who can also be potentially at risk.
Commercial pest control service for schools and other educational facilities
Educational facilities have a wide range of settings that are susceptible to pest problems, such as classrooms, administration buildings, student housing, food service operations and public spaces. These areas all present a wide array of potential threats. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), pests can invade these school areas:
- Gyms and locker rooms
- Exterior conduits
- Landscapes, school grounds and athletic fields
The EPA lists these pests as being of particular concern in schools:
- Bed bugs
- Bees and wasps
- Biting midges (also known as gnats)
In addition to the more common pests, schools can also experience problems with birds, and wildlife.
As serious as they can be, sanitation and health concerns aren’t the only dangers posed by infestations. For example, pests such as rodents and termites can cause structural property damage. The presence of pests may also cause operational interruptions and delays, which can be costly and inconvenient. Pest invasions may also adversely affect employee morale and productivity.
Commercial pest control service is the solution
Most educational and government facilities must adhere to strict regulations and health codes that ensure safe and sanitary conditions for building occupants and visitors. Professional exterminators who treat the premises must be familiar with the guidelines to maintain compliance with both federal agencies and local health codes, which can be complex. Some commercial pest control services even have systems in place to help with the reporting that’s required for compliance.
The dangers of pest infestations are real for schools and government facilities, as well as for other commercial entities. To ensure that sanitation, health and safety aren’t compromised for those who attend classes, work in and visit schools and government buildings, it’s important to take a proactive approach to pest control. A specialized, professional pest control plan using Integrated Pest Management works to address current threats and the reasons why pests may be present to help prevent future infestations.