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Residents of Houston Community Sunnyside Latest Victims of Texas Bed Bug Problem

Sunnyside is a very old community in Houston to the south of downtown just outside the 610 loop. Normally a fairly unnoticed and quiet community, lately it has been making news for something no community wants to be known for—a bed bug problem. Residents of the senior living Simmons Gardens Apartments on Scott Street near Airport Boulevard are complaining that their apartments have become unlivable due to the presence of bed bugs. The problem has gotten so bad that the Houston Health Department is investigating and Houston City Council has gotten involved.

Texas Has Three Cities in the Top 50 Worst U.S. Cities for Bed Bug Problems

Terminix publishes a list each year that no city wants the honor of making. It is the 50 cities in the United States with the worst bed bug problem.  On their 2023 list, Texas had 3 cities in the top 50. Dallas came in as the worst bed bug-infested city in Texas and #6 on the national list. The second-worst goes to Houston with an 11th-place finish nationally. Finally, Tyler/Longview trails the larger Texas Cities at 41st on the national list for bed bug infestations.

How Do Infestations Happen?

bed bug infestationContrary to what many think, poor living conditions do not bring about bed bugs. Generally, they are brought in on someone’s clothes or other belongings that have been exposed.  Once there, they often go unnoticed until it is too late. A single impregnated bed bug can multiply into over 13,000 in less than six months. This is why early detection is very beneficial to controlling the problem. Unfortunately, once it gets out of hand, it takes a pretty in-depth plan to eliminate it which often involves repeat inspections and treatment. In an apartment complex or hotel, the bugs can travel from room to room inside the wall space quickly. So it is easy for some to get overlooked and the infestation to start ll over again.

Dealing With a Texas Bed Bug Problem

Bed bug infestations can cause substantial property loss. If you spot them, you should report them to the property owner immediately and take steps to completely treat and sanitize all infested property. All exposed clothing should be washed on the highest heat temperature they can stand with a bed bug laundry additive. All furniture and carpet needs to be treated as well. When you are in a hotel or an apartment when the bed bug problem is noticed, the property owner has a duty to act to take care of the problem immediately. Lastly, call the Texas Department of State Health Services at 888-963-7111 and report it if the condition is not addressed and resolved immediately.

Bed Bugs and the Law

Under the Texas Health and Safety Code Sections 341.011 and 341.012, bed bugs are considered a public nuisance that property owners are required to remove as soon as they become aware of the problem. The longer they fail to act, the worse the problem gets. If a landlord fails or refuses to take action, they may be liable for damages including the cost of treating and/or replacing clothes and furnishings and even the cost of relocating to a habitable place. Hire a bed bug lawyer if you suffered property loss or relocation expenses due to a bed bug infestation and the property owner is not taking responsibility for the damages.




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