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Paris Battles Bedbugs Before Olympic Games

Paris has a major problem with bedbugs. And with only 10 months to go before the Paris Olympics, the city's deputy mayor has said "no one is safe."

Over the summer, people in Paris complained of bedbugs in hotels and rental apartments. But more recently, people have been posting videos on social media of bedbugs seen on high-speed trains, on the Paris Metro, in cinemas and in Charles de Gaulle Airport.

Bedbugs are insects that feed on human blood. They are small and usually hide during the day, so they can be hard to find. Often people don't know they have bedbugs in their home until they get small, itchy bites on their skin.

However, bedbugs can be carried quite easily into a home if they get onto some furniture or luggage. In a city like Paris, travelers can easily pick up bedbugs and spread them between hotels and public transport.

As Emmanuel Gregoire, the deputy mayor of Paris, said to the French TV station LCI at the end of September: "There are 3.6 million people who come into Paris every day, and bedbugs do not stop on the outskirts of the city."

Gregoire has written to Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne, saying, "The state urgently needs to put an action plan in place" to deal with the problem, "as France is preparing to welcome the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2024."

Now Transport Minister Clemente Beaune has announced that he will meet with transport operators to discuss the problem in order to "reassure and protect" travelers.

Bedbugs are not a new problem for France. They were once quite common, but mostly disappeared in the 1950s. However, in recent years they have been increasing because of the rise in international travel.

Experts say if you find you have bedbugs, you should wash clothes and bedding at high temperatures, and have a pest control service come to your home.


What are your thoughts on Paris' bedbug problem? Were you surprised to learn that bedbugs are so common in France? Have you ever been disappointed with the cleanliness of a hotel or holiday rental apartment? What pests are common in your country? Have you ever had to deal with a pest problem at home? What did you do?


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