Sleep Tight, Don’t Let the Bedbugs Bite

Bedbugs (or bed bugs) are small, elusive, parasitic insects of the family Cimicidae that feeds preferentially on human blood. The name ‘bed bug’ is derived from the insect’s preferred habitat of infesting houses and especially beds or other common areas where people may sleep.

Largely eradicated as pests in the developed world in the early 1940s, bedbugs have been resurgent since about 1995. The cause of this resurgence is still uncertain, but it is thought to be related to increased international travel, the use of new pest-control methods that do not affect bedbugs, and increasing pesticide resistance. The resurgence led the United States Environmental Protection Agency to hold a National Bed Bug Summit in 2009.

My customer, who produces made to order mattresses, mats, and pillows had a unique problem. He thought locating his plant along a picturesque trout stream was a great idea because of its ambiance and an occasional wetting of a line during lunch time. Little did he realize that the daily hatch of mayflies that trout fishermen revel in would be his disdain in his manufacturing operations.

When mayflies land, they stay pretty much put. They do not fly away when disturbed as other insects do. Attempts to shoo them away before the product is packed in plastic over-wrap, is ineffective. Mayflies are totally harmless and only live a few hours. In practicality there is no real harm if they get wrapped up in the packaging. But, with all eyes on bedding these days, the observance of just one may fly causes his entire production lot to be quarantined.

Using two 54″ long EXAIR air knifes mounted opposing each other, the product was passed between them just before being inserted into the plastic wrap. The force of the high velocity air stream effectively blew off any critters.

Joe Panfalone
Application Engineer

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