During the lockdown period pests have thrived because of the untouched conditions of many work premises. With this being the case, is pest control necessary for your business? Unfortunately, in many cases, the answer may be yes.
Over the lockdown period, one of the biggest threats to your business and your employees when returning to work is the possibility of a serious pest infestation. This infestation is likely to have formed due to the premises of your company being unused and unmanned for a long period of time.
The British Pest Control Association (BPCA) Chief Executive, Ian Andrew, has recently commented saying:
“Pests have thrived because of lockdown conditions and all businesses need to prioritise checking for signs of infestation when they return to work. The risks associated with public health pests going unchecked in a business could have a disastrous effect on your staff and client’s health if you don’t take pest management seriously.”
With this being the case, how can you ensure the safety of your staff and clients when you re-open for business?
What causes a pest infestation?
Firstly, let us identify what causes a pest infestation. Due to many buildings and premises being closed, it is likely that certain situations have not been monitored to prevent pests infesting an area. It is this lack of resistance that allows the pest to thrive. These may include things like, lack of maintenance, monitoring of general conditions and forgotten food items.
You must also take into consideration that you can be infested by both rodent and insects.
What you can do before you return to work to ensure you are in the clear
Before returning to work, it is vital you ask yourself some questions to work out the risk of your business being infested by pests.
Did you do everything you should and could have done when you closed your business?
This is important as the answer will inform you how likely you are to have had an infestation on your premises. If you took the appropriate steps before closing your premises at the start of the lockdown period, you will be at less risk of a pest infestation.
Some tasks before lockdown may have included:
- Safely securing all food sources from pests.
- Checking all pest management equipment is functional.
- Cleaning and ensuring you have a high level of hygiene.
- Checking that all access and entrances to your building are closed.
Did you keep your pest management supply going during lockdown?
If you kept your pest management supply going over the period you were closed, you will be in a much better position to re-open your doors. If you did not, then you have allowed at least a 3-month period for pests to feed, breed and damage your building and its contents.
Supposing this is the case, it is essential you sweep your premises looking for any signs that pests have infested your premises.
Have you regularly inspected your site for signs of activity?
If you have been regularly checking your site for infestation, you will hopefully have noticed signs that pests have entered your premises. If you have not, then we recommend you schedule a time in your week to start doing so.
Signs of pest activity could include:
- The smell of urine from rodents
- Eggs or shed skin from insects
- Damage to the exterior of the property around drains or other possible entry points
- Damage to internal fixings
What to do if you are infested?
If you are infested, the best plan of action is to contact professionals to eradicate your pest problem. Hiring a professional service ensures you will completely eradicate the problem from your premises and stop pests returning in the near future. Remember, the well-being of your employees and clients is your main priority.
Check out our pest control services at WINNS.
How to prevent an infestation in the future?
As you can see, pest control, is a necessary process to help keep your business free of rodents and insects. Check out some tips below on how you can control the infestation moving forward:
- Keep bin lids closed and sealed. Even small gaps can be entry points for pests.
- Keep food waste in a wheelie bin to stop rodents breaking through your bin bags.
- Do not leave any food waste lying around.
- Maintain a regular presence in your premises and regularly check for an infestation.
- Do not put loose food waste straight in the bin. Wrapping it in approved compostable liners, plastic bags or refuse sacks will ensure it does not stick to the sides of containers and will help contain any odours.
- Check the exterior of your property and ensure there are no gaps for pests to enter.
Download the BPCA guide and checklist
If you have liked the information in this blog you can download the guide from The British Pest Control Association (BPCA).