Pests are a factor in every commercial building. You will have to deal with them in some aspect, no matter the industry. Nature regularly intersects with human life, so pests will affect your hotel in some fashion. It’s properly managing the intersection, however, that separates a successful facility administration from one that fails.
Being responsible to multiple entities can be a stressful situation, especially in a hotel. Not only do you have customers to satisfy, but you also have internal management, maybe a corporate entity and if you prepare food, the health department or other governing body. We want to make this a slightly less daunting task and give you tips on managing the pest vulnerable zones in your hotel. In this segment, we address the most and least concerning areas of your hotel with respect to specific pests.
High Risk: Kitchen/Food Preparation/Cold Storage
In any setting where food is stored or prepared, your policy shouldn’t be anything other than “zero tolerance,” especially in regard to rodents. Should a rodent or signs of a rodent be present, your staff must immediately notify management or other responsible parties of the incident and management should ensure the pest control operator becomes involved. Rodents are a direct health hazard to the guests, whether it’s contaminating food stores or damaging prepared dishes, so they must not be taken lightly.
Low Risk: Outdoor Seating Areas
Your hotel may have any number of sections for outdoor leisure and food or drink consumption. While rodents may visit these areas to snack on the occasional loose crumb, they will always look for a more sustainable food source and seek shelter indoors. The majority of your rodent control efforts should be focused indoors where the greatest risks are.
High Risk: Dumpsters
Trash receptacles will attract nearly every type of pest, so regularly inspecting them will need to be a portion of the hotel’s sanitation plan. However, flies are especially a nuisance in this setting. They feed on decomposing material and can transfer disease-causing microbes into food sources. Depending on the layout, your dumpsters may be located near entrances to the kitchen. An infestation could lead to flies infiltrating your kitchen, transmitting bacteria, and affecting visitors. Learn more about combatting flies in our sister company’s blog.
Low Risk: Delivery Areas
Loading bay doors or other entrances accepting shipments are usually primary offenders for pests. Rodents can tear into packaging and contaminate the goods while cockroaches may escape into the pallets and breed in or defecate on your products. Flies, however, typically won’t become established and breed in this space. Where some control measures should be put into place to catch those flies entering through the doors, the majority of your efforts for fly control should be focused on sanitation in areas with an abundance of organic matter is present, such as kitchens and dumpsters.
High Risk: Laundry Room
We’re not saying that guest rooms shouldn’t be the focal point of bed bug management, because they should be, but the laundry rooms should be treated with the same degree of scrutiny. If bed bugs make it to your laundry room unnoticed, it’s possible they could be transferred from dirty sheets to clean sheets and be transported to a different location. To help eliminate this issue, make sure your staff inspects linens as they are removed from beds to look for signs of bed bugs. In addition, ensure that dirty linens are sealed while they are transported from guest rooms to the laundry and while they wait for laundering. Finally, make sure all linens are dried on high heat to kill any bed bugs that may have slipped past inspections.
Low Risk: Entryways
Although it may be tempting to stop bed bugs before they enter your facility, bed bugs aren’t going to walk through your front doors without a human host. Unless you want your hotel doors to resemble a TSA checkpoint, you’re going to have to perform this maintenance after each visitor leaves.