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Staff cleared out after bed bugs found at OC Transpo head office, nearby building

OC Transpo's head office is located at 1500 St-Laurent Boul., east of downtown Ottawa. The transit agency said March 5, 2020 that bedbugs were found in this building and in one more of its nearby buildings and it had staff clear out of both buildings for pest treatment.
OC Transpo's head office is located at 1500 St-Laurent Boul., east of downtown Ottawa. The transit agency said March 5, 2020 that bedbugs were found in this building and in one more of its nearby buildings and it had staff clear out of both buildings for pest treatment. Screenshot / Google Maps Street View

OC Transpo says staff have been cleared out from its head office on St. Laurent Boulevard and a nearby building while the two buildings get treated for bed bugs found on Wednesday.

An employee found a single bed bug at the transit agency’s main administration building at 1500 St-Laurent Boul., east of downtown Ottawa, on Wednesday afternoon according to a memo sent to members of Ottawa city council and the city’s transit commission and shared with media.

READ MORE: OC Transpo orders ‘spotters’ back to all LRT platforms after CCTV system glitches

A pest management company was brought in right away to investigate the whole transit office and other buildings “in the immediate vicinity,” said the memo, signed by Troy Charter, OC Transpo’s director of operations.

The company investigated overnight and reported it found bed bugs in “certain specific areas” on the second and third floors of 1500 St-Laurent and also in “one specific area” at 875 Belfast Rd., another OC Transpo building.

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How to prevent bed bugs
How to prevent bed bugs

“There was no evidence of bed bugs on the other floors of the administration building nor in the Transit Operations Control Centre,” Charter wrote.

Transit employees who normally work in those two buildings have been asked to work remotely or in an alternate location as the work spaces are treated, Charter said.

Pest treatment began Thursday; buses, trains cleaned ‘daily’, agency says

Both buildings are getting treated as of 1 p.m. on Thursday and they’re expected to be finished by Saturday afternoon, Charter said.

The entire head office is being treated; at 875 Belfast Rd., it’s only a “contained area.”

Charter’s memo said the buildings’ air quality will be tested before employees return and the buildings will be monitored “to ensure that the treatment process has been successful.”

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The bed bug issue hasn’t caused any impact to public transit service or customers, Charter said. He added that OC Transpo buses and trains are cleaned “daily” and that “any issues identified are addressed before the vehicle is returned to service.”

The transit agency is in “close contact” with the Ottawa Public Health about the bed bug issue, according to the memo.