Sadiq Khan has said that the possibility of bedbugs on London’s public transport is a ‘real source of concern’.
The Mayor of London said that he was in contact with officials in Paris after the French capital became overwhelmed by outbreaks of bedbugs, with footage showing them crawling on seats of buses and trains.
Transport for London are said to be keeping an eye on the situation and are disinfecting seats daily as part of its cleaning protocol.
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Despite the measures in place, a video went viral over the weekend, gathering more than a million views, of what is claimed to be a bedbug on a passenger’s leg on the Victoria line in London.
There are also fears that the infestation could have travelled further north in the UK after a bedbug was supposedly spotted on a bus in Manchester yesterday.
However, Adam Juson of the pest control company Merlin Environmental suggested that the video did not appear to be real.
Sadiq Khan (pictured) has said that the possibility of bedbugs on London’s public transport is a ‘real source of concern’
A video went viral over the weekend of what is claimed to be a bedbug on a passenger’s leg on the Victoria line in London
A bed bug has also been spotted on a bus in Manchester following an outbreak of the critters in France
Experts have warned bed bugs, whose bites cause painful itching, have developed a resistance to the insecticides used to stop them
In response to the threat of bedbugs, Mr Khan told PoliticsJoe: ‘This is a real source of concern. People are worried about these bugs in Paris causing a problem in London.’
He added: ‘I want to reassure those listening that TfL has the best regimes to clean our assets on a nightly basis.
‘We are speaking to our friends in Paris to see if there are any lessons to be learnt but for a variety of reasons we don’t think those issues will arise in London; but there is no complacency from TfL.’
Mr Khan said he had been in regular contact with TfL about the potential outbreak and is ensuring buses, the Tube and the Eurostar are being regularly cleaned.
Attempting to put fears at ease, Adam Juson of the pest control company Merlin Environmental, told The Telegraph that the apparent bedbug featured in the viral video did not appear to be real.
‘It does look sort of like a bedbug but the video is not really good enough to ID from. The bug is not mobile so this could be a remnant from a treatment or one that has got caught on the person’s clothes,’ he said.
‘We have found bedbugs on trains in the past so it’s not beyond the bounds of possibility but this looks wrong.’
Experts have warned the blood-sucking critters, whose bites cause painful itching, have developed a resistance to insecticides.
Eurostar said its trains between London and Paris are to be disinfected if there is the ‘slightest doubt’ of infestation.
Mr Khan said he had been in regular contact with TfL about the potential outbreak and is ensuring buses, the Tube and the Eurostar are being regularly cleaned
A concerned passenger posted the unnerving picture to X, formerly Twitter , showing a pest climbing on the window of a First Bus and urged the public transport operator to ‘do something about this quickly’
Eurostar said its trains between London and Paris are to be disinfected if there is the ‘slightest doubt’ of infestation. It also told MailOnline it plans to increase ‘preventative treatments’ across their entire network but said cases of bedbugs on its trains were ‘extremely rare’
The Grim footage which was posted to TikTok by user @Lassgold shows what appears to be a bed bug sitting on a passenger’s leg on the Victoria Tube line.
They urged Transport for London (TfL) to ‘sort it out’ in the footage, which has been watched 1.6million times.
In the video, the small jewellery business owner joked that the critter said ‘he’d got a great deal on the Eurostar and wondered if I could take him home’.
TfL claimed it was ‘not aware of any outbreaks in London’.
But the organisation said it would ‘monitor’ its network and continue its ‘rigorous and thorough cleaning measures’.
It also said it was ‘committed to providing a clean and safe environment on the Tube for our customers and staff’.
A concerned passenger also today posted an unnerving picture on X showing a pest climbing on the window of a First Bus and urged the public transport operator to ‘do something about this quickly’.
The company said the image was ‘really concerning to see’ and apologised for the incident, adding it would report it to their managing team.
Meanwhile, a major UK hotel chain has started quizzing guests as they check in on whether they have arrived from France.
Rooms of those who have are given a deep clean by pest control experts when they leave.
An outbreak of the blood-sucking insects has provoked a wave of disgust in Paris.
Residents and tourists have taken to social media to post images of bugs crawling across hotel bed sheets and train seats.
An outbreak of the blood-sucking insects has provoked a wave of disgust in Paris. Residents and tourists have taken to social media to post images of bugs crawling across hotel bed sheets and train seats. In one video posted on the platform yesterday, @jimmytravelsworld showed him picking out bedbugs using tweezers from his bed and under the mattress. ‘When you go to Paris to find love but end up finding bugs living rent free in your bed’, he said. In the video watched more than 44,000 times, he also shared bite marks of his wrists after living in the infected property
The tiny blood-suckers have been caught crawling on train seats and inside Paris’ bustling Charles-de-Gaulle Airport in recent weeks. Travellers have even complained about infestations of the annoying, 5mm critters inside Airbnbs, hotels, cinemas and restaurants. In one video posted to TikTok, seen 3.7million times, influencer @wanderlustfulrosie captured footage of what appears to be bed bugs on a hotel pillow case. ‘BE CAREFUL IN PARIS!!!! There is a bed bug infestation problem!!’, she wrote
Paris’s deputy mayor has claimed ‘no-one is safe’ and demanded urgent action to tackle the ‘scourge’ of bed bugs ahead of the 2024 Olympics. Video footage shared online shows the insects crawling over seats on the Paris metro, on high-speed trains and at Paris’ Charles-de-Gaulle Airport
Experts say the outbreak in Paris is likely due to residents returning to the capital after spending the summer elsewhere. But it’s also due to the fact that bedbugs are becoming harder to exterminate.
Although they get their name from their habit of nesting in your mattress, bed bugs can also live in sofas, carpets and furniture.
They hide in small cracks and crevices as narrow as a credit card and mainly feed at night.
Bed bugs, which get to about 7mm, typically spread when they get into clothing or bags which are then taken elsewhere.
While the bugs don’t carry any diseases that sicken humans and their bite is painless, it leaves behind an itchy red mark on areas that are exposed while sleeping.
Although Paris is battling its own invasion of bed bugs, the critters naturally exist in Britain, too.
Data from pest-control company Rentokil in September also showed that from 2022 to 2023, the UK saw a 65 per cent increase in bed bug infestations.
It blamed the resurgence in travel and hotel stays since the pandemic.
At the time, experts also suggested it could be due to more people buying second-hand furniture from resale websites such as eBay and Facebook marketplace.
According to the British Pest Control Association, there are now roughly 12,000 bedbug-related callouts every year.
Eurostar told MailOnline it plans to increase ‘preventative treatments’ across their entire network but said cases of bedbugs on its trains were ‘extremely rare’.
Millennium Hotels and Resorts, which operates 18 hotels in the UK, are asking new guests whether they have travelled from France, according to staff at one of its London hotels.
Meanwhile, staff at the five-star Renaissance Hotel at St Pancras station, the London Eurostar terminus, said no bedbugs have been detected there but staff have received training during the last fortnight on how to spot the pests.
Air France also said if suspected bedbugs are reported on board one of its flights ‘the aircraft would be grounded and a specialist team would immediately be dispatched to confirm or rule out the presence of these insects’.
It comes as experts yesterday warned that failing to tackle Britain’s growing bedbug problem will herald a return of Victorian-era infestations.
Professor James Logan, an insect expert at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and chief executive of research firm Arctech Innovation, told the Mail on Sunday: ‘The insecticides we’ve used for decades to fight these bugs can’t always be relied on any more.
‘Bedbugs in many places have evolved to resist these toxic chemicals.’
He added: ‘The trick is to catch them early before they begin laying eggs.
‘We should be implementing more traps and alert systems to tackle the problem.
‘But we also need to develop new insecticides to avoid infestations becoming commonplace again.’
In France, concerns over the crisis have led to French officials holding crisis talks about the increase in bed bugs, with ministers in Emmanuel Macron’s government promising to ‘rapidly bring answers’ for the public.
The deputy mayor of Paris, Emmanuel Gregoire, last week claimed that ‘no one is safe’ from the ‘scourge’ of bedbugs.
The concerns have gained added weight, with France in the throes of hosting the Rugby World Cup and Paris preparing to welcome thousands of athletes and fans from around the world for the 2024 Olympics.
France’s national health agency recommends people check their hotel beds when travelling and be cautious about bringing second-hand furniture or pre-owned mattresses into their homes.
Once bed bugs are sighted in a home, affected rooms must be treated quickly, it said.