A macro photo of a bed bug on the tip of a stick, Source: Depositphotos

Bed bugs have now conquered the Paris Metro

Bed bugs have now conquered the Paris Metro

The worrying news comes in the wake of a discovery of the pests in local cinemas some weeks ago

It seems that Paris is experiencing a swarm infestation of bed bugs, after on Wednesday, a train driver reported seeing these parasitic insects in one of the metro cars. This has set people and authorities on edge as the pests have now become the talk of the town and a public nuisance on a grand, and possibly hard-to-imagine, scale.

In the past weeks, there were reports that bed bugs were found in some of the Paris cinemas prompting the city council to address the French government with a petition to do something fearing that this could turn into a public health problem. Not to mention the tarnishing of the reputation of the French capital, which is preparing to host the 2024 Olympic Games next summer.

What does this mean for public health in the French capital?

What’s more, there were reports and videos on social media of bed bugs on the TGV high-speed train linking Paris to Lille. But what are the bedbugs doing in public transport at all? According to experts, it is perfectly possible for these parasites to infest the fabric that covers train seats and lay their eggs there. The same fabric that makes them comfortable.

Since the problem became known, there has been some unease among travellers. A commuter told Le Parisien that he’d seen another passenger anxiously checking the seats before she sat down. 

People on social media are calling for the train cars to be disinfected, but that already is being done every two months. However, bedbugs are notoriously resistant and hard to get rid of. 

They live off the blood of people and animals, causing itchy bites. However, bed bugs are not carriers of viruses and bacteria, thus they do not cause disease.

It remains to be seen whether the government will come up with more robust measures. Meanwhile, just exercise caution when travelling in Paris public transit.



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