I’m Getting A Transfer

As I write this, I am walking on a treadmill. There’s a gym member on the treadmill next to me – at a pace a little faster than me – but I’ll catch up. I haven’t given up on that New Year’s resolution just yet.

I know. I know. This should be a safety moment. Hang with me.

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I am concerned about this building and it’s pest problem – hopefully lack there of. Hundreds of people come in and out….. all day, every day. What do they bring from home? How can I be sure not to take anything home with me? INSPECTIONS. On my person. On my clothes. On my shoes. It’s a fairly easy task. Most gym facilities provide locker rooms and showers. Yes, that’s what I’ll do.

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As a pest management professional, what are you bringing from Facility #1 to Facility #2? Are your self inspections adequate? Do you keep a full change of clothes, including shoes, and underclothes, in your vehicle? Do you have disposable coveralls? Is the lunch you eat in your vehicle allergen free? Hand washing is critical.

Insects can latch onto shoes and pant legs without you noticing. You bend down at account #2, and that insect falls off. Bam! You’ve transferred the issue. Some of you might say “job security”. I say BS. Take care of your customers the same way you want to be taken care of.

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A coworker was telling me about a pest issue at an account. “This has me stumped”, she said. “These insects are on both sides of the clean/dirty line. Production staff and office staff don’t criss-cross…. ever.” Separate locker rooms, separate break rooms. Hhhmmm? My response, “Could it be the janitor?”

YES! That janitorial employee has a cart full of supplies, but also trash, debris, and organic matter caked to the wheels of that cleaning cart. What a perfect harborage transfer between the clean areas and dirty areas. Those push carts need to be part of the Master Sanitation Schedule.

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Customers pay us to get it right. That means following our company, and our client, protocols. How would you react if a pest control company sent a technician to your home that had just completed a bed bug treatment? You would want to be sure that nothing got transferred to your home, right? I know you just raised an eyebrow.

And, YES, I meant to leave you hanging.

Published by Melisa Arnold, A.C.E.

My career in pest management began while working in a flour mill as the “in-house” technician in 2008. I am certified in multiple states including a DOT CDL/HazMat. I began working full time as a fumigation-pest control tech in 2010. I achieved my Associate Certified Entomologist (ACE) in 2018. I have a Master Tech certification from Kansas State University/Kansas Pest Control Association. I hold a Bat Management certification from NWCOA. Every day, I realize how much I DON’T KNOW. My goal for this blog is to share my every day experiences from the field and to make us all think outside the box for solutions to make pest control make sense.

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