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PEST CONTROL


THE EARLY BIRD CATCHES THE VERMIN


One of the most essential aspects of pest control is catching the problem early, before it spreads. This is the view of Paul Bates, Managing Director of Cleankill Pest Control, who offers up his advice on how best to tackle unwanted infestations.


Early detection of pest activity is essential to stop problems spreading. That is one of the many reasons cleaning staff and pest controllers should work more closely together for the benefit of customers and building users, according to a leading pest control expert.


During his 30 years in pest control, Paul Bates, Managing Director of Cleankill Pest Control, has experienced relationships with cleaning companies that have been a real partnership and others where cleaning operatives were less receptive to changing some of their practices to help reduce the risk of pests.


Paul explained: “A good, simple example is switching from emptying bins in offices to evening rather than early morning. Foodstuffs put in bins by office staff during the day and not emptied until the next morning feed pests throughout the night. Remains in a crisp packet are a tasty meal for


52 | Tomorrow’s Cleaning February 2016


mice and apple cores in a bin provide a nice breeding ground for fruit flies.”


Cleaning staff in general should be made more aware, through training, about the hazards of pests, Paul says. For instance, if they are cleaning where there is evidence of mice, the urine from the rodents won’t be visible and cleaners could unknowingly contaminate nearby areas by spreading bacteria.


“The best advice is to train all cleaning staff to be vigilant and report any problems or suspected issues immediately. This is particularly important in food production, storage and serving areas where staff should be on the lookout for droppings or other signs such as damaged packaging,” he said. “Cleanliness is key, as is storing foodstuffs in sealed containers and pest-proof store rooms.”


No establishment can ever be guaranteed pest free. Modern building features like stud partitioning, breeze blocks, false flooring and


service voids often create the perfect harbourages for pests.


German cockroaches can hide behind doors, in kitchens, behind and under cookers, sinks and kitchen units. They also like to live around water pipes and radiators, particularly where pipes pass through walls; inside cupboards; under tables and behind wall tiles. In kitchens and catering areas they can be found inside plugs and sockets. Bedbugs will live happily in any available cracks and crevices.


Some pest control companies, such as Cleankill, will offer to train cleaning staff to be their ‘eyes and ears’ and stop early warning signs. For instance, there might be an unexplained increase in the number of flies in a room which could simply be cluster flies – or they may indicate that there is a dead rat carcass in the void under the floor.


Experienced pest controllers can often identify a type of pest by smell as


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