That’s what was really showing at a movie theater in New York City’s Time Square a few years back when a patron’s complaint of bed bug bites prompted theater managers to hire professionals for a closer inspection.
What they discovered was a screamer: Bed bugs were found in two seats at the city’s AMC Empire 25 Movie Theater. Seems there was a real-life thriller materializing in that Cineplex and no need for special 3-D viewing glasses with the six-legged villains so up close and personal.
In case you had not heard yes, it’s a true story – no fiction here folks.
Big cushy movie-theater style seats are quite inviting to the parasitic insects, especially because meals come with free delivery: One after another, each unsuspecting moviegoer enters the bed bug’s domain and becomes the next victim. It’s quite the life for the little freeloaders.
And it’s not entirely unusual.
More and more, bed bugs are making special appearances in popular public spaces like movie theaters as these critters make a comeback after many decades of almost pure absence. Statistics report a 500% increase in reported bed bug cases in the past few years due in part to a wide variety of factors: increase of international travel, urban sprawl, evolutionary immunities in the insect, and the ban of some pesticides.
These easily-visible insects have become quite popular: Why bed bugs were reportedly discovered at the hip and trendy retail outlets Hollister and Abercrombie & Fitch in New York, causing both stores to close so they could be professionally treated.
Finding bed bugs in these very public spaces creates a new challenge for exterminating professionals who are turning more and more to heat as a solution for the elimination of these hardy insects.
AZEX Pest Solutions is an innovator in utilizing heat eradication for pest elimination and pioneered the first bed bug heat eradication treatments in 2007. Heat elimination is an environmentally-friendly technique because it does not utilize chemicals. But that’s not the only benefit from using heat. Heat also offers by-product benefit factors for living spaces, like oxidizing odors that can proliferate public spaces and killing common mold spores, which are allergens that trigger asthma. But how is this done?
AZEX uses specialized equipment to heat air from outdoors to create positive pressure inside and reach consistent targeted temperatures. AZEX treatments reach temperatures between 140- and 160-degrees Fahrenheit, which effectively kills all bed bug life stages – from egg to adults.
AZEX carefully measures and gauges temperatures to ensure all items in each room treated remain intact without damage.