PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) - Two Portsmouth schools were treated for bed bugs over the weekend following separate incidents.
According to Director of Operations Nita Mensia-Joseph, a student at I.C. Norcom High School complained of being itchy during the school day Friday and went to the nurse's office to get checked out. The nurse found a bug on the student, which a pest management company identified as a bed bug. The school called parents Friday night and again on Monday alerting them of the situation. A letter also went home with students Monday.
The message, in part, reads:
"On February 1, 2013 bugs were discovered at I.C. Norcom High School. School division personnel immediately contacted Dodson, an exterminating company under contract with Portsmouth Public Schools. Dodson confirmed that the insects were bed bugs and the school was declared a "hot zone." Steps were taken to secure the building while the exterminators put plans into action to rid the school of the bugs.
Over the weekend the building was treated. The treatment was completed on Sunday."
There were no bugs found in the school, according to Mensia-Joseph.
As a preventative measure, I.C. Norcom will seal each child's coat and backpack in a plastic bag during the school day. The school will be re-inspected later this week.
School officials at Lakeview Elementary School in Portsmouth confirmed to WAVY.com that letters and robo calls went out after a similar incident there Thursday evening.
"If you're concerned for your children, what you can do as soon as they come home from school is remove all their clothing wash it and dry it at the highest setting heat will kill them," Jessica Mullen, a health educator with the Portsmouth Health Department told 10 On Your Side.
A student attending an after-school program was getting onto a bus when a teacher reportedly noticed a bug on the student. The teacher put the bug in a bag and got it inspected. It was determined to be a bed bug. The school was treated over the weekend. That included throwing away pillows, blankets and other items that could harbor bugs, as a precautionary measure. There were no bed bugs found in the school.
Three Portsmouth school buses were also treated as a precaution during the initial inspection. Mensia-Joseph said the remaining 139 buses in the fleet will be treated this week.
The Portsmouth Health Department was notified in both cases.
You should also inspect your home for bed bugs. The adult bugs are about the size of apple seeds and the babies look like moving grains of sand. They hide near the piping and seems of your mattresses or cracks in the bed frame. If you see them, call a professional exterminator for help.
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