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Bedbug treatment begins for housing complex

Pest-control workers started inspecting and spraying rooms Monday in a portion of Ballard-Griffith Towers in Lexington to kill bedbugs, health department officials said.

Another pest-control company will start treating another section, called Ballard Place, on Thursday.

Bedbugs have been found in 86 of 317 rooms of Ballard-Griffith Towers. All rooms, hallways, offices, storage areas, laundry rooms and other public areas will be treated.

"This is not just a Ballard-Griffith problem," health department spokesman Kevin Hall said in a news release. "This is not just a housing authority problem. This is not just a Lexington problem. There is a global resurgence of this insect, and we're doing everything we can to address it."

The complex provides housing for low-income senior citizens.

Residents will have to leave their apartments for four hours after treatment begins. The buildings have areas where residents can wait. Residents also have been asked to empty closets, remove clutter, and wash and dry clothing and bed linens at 120 degrees or higher, which will kill bedbugs. The housing authority will pay for large bedding to be sent out and dried at a high temperature.

The treatment is expected to end Nov. 24.

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