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News of the Day ... In Perspective

12/05/2005

New York hotel sued over bedbug bites

Two Swiss women have filed a lawsuit for damages owing to physical pain, mental anguish, emotional distress, and lost earnings after they were bitten repeatedly by bedbugs during a week’s stay in one of New York’s largest hotels.

The prominent hotel, which was not named in the wire report, is said to be across from Madison Square Garden (Ariz Daily Star 12/3/05).

Bedbugs are wingless, reddish-brown insects about one-fourth inch long. Their bites typically cause a linear pattern of welts called the “breakfast, lunch, and dinner sign.” They have been known to transmit hepatitis b and American trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease).

Virtually eradicated by DDT before it was banned by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1972, bedbugs are coming back, causing enormous problems for high-end hotels. Hotel infestations increased by 300% between 2000 and 2001, and are continuing to rise. The bugs can survive a full year without a blood meal and are extremely difficult to eradicate.

Additional information:

“DDT: A Case Study in Scientific Fraud” by J. Gordon Edwards, Ph.D., J Am Phys Surg, Fall 2004.

“If They Can Ban DDT, They Can Ban Anything” and “Insect Pests Making a Comeback,” Doctors for Disaster Preparedness Newsletter, November 2004.

 

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