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December 6, 2012 at 11:48 AM

Bed bugs in library books a problem at UW and across U.S.

Bugs in books? Yep, and it’s happening here.

A New York Times piece about bedbugs and other crawly creatures showing up in library books says the problem is occurring across the country – including Seattle.

The article quotes Stephanie Lamson, head of preservation services at the University of Washington Libraries, saying she has put bug-infested books in plastic bags and then into freezers to kill the critters.

Lamson said twice in August, circulation desk employees at the UW Libraries  saw insects crawling in returned books.  She immediately put the books in a freezer in the natural history museum, at temperatures of minus 18 degrees Fahrenheit.

Lamson said she chose cold, rather than the heat treatments being used by some other libraries, because heat can accelerate a book’s aging.

For more on what other libraries around the country are doing about the problem, see The New York Times piece.

And if bed bugs are bugging you, find a ton of information about what they are and how to deal with them on this fact sheet from Public Health – Seattle & King County.

A spokeswoman for Seattle Public Libary, Andra Addison, said she was not aware of any cases of bedbugs in Seattle library books.

0 Comments | More in General news, Health | Topics: bedbugs, library books, New York

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