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Bedbugs on BA Flight Get Photo, Website Treatment from Flier

Travel News — By John Curran on March 17, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Bedbugs are a hassle that seem to be a part of living in most major cities, but it’s less often we hear about them in the air. On a flight from Los Angeles to Bangalore, a 28-year-old woman was bit dozens of times, but British Airways staff refused to acknowledge it at the time.

Unfortunately for BA, Zane Selkirk took photos of herself on the flight, using the airliner’s bathroom to keep track of the numerous bites which she then posted on a website, as the Daily Mail notes. After the site, BA-Bites.com, was up for a little while and noted the lack of customer service response that Ms. Selkirk received for her troubles on the flight, BA eventually offered money and an apology.

While the images are uncomfortable, so too is the fact that both flights were trans-oceanic, meaning they were longer than 10 hours. Ms. Selkirk was moved to a different area of the cabin by flight attendants during both flights (one in January and one in February). But to keep from suffering the same fate, her website also lists a few tips worth noting:

  1. Use hardside luggage and luggage liners. This dovetails with an article from AviationRecord.com that suggests that the lack of nooks and crannies for bugs to get warm is the best bet. Selkirk also argues that light-colored luggage is easier for spotting bed bugs and other unwanted guests.
  2. Make an inspection of your seat and surroundings, looking for potential specks that are moving. If you think you’ve been bit, quarantine your stuff at the airport and bag it for future cleaning. This saves on costs of fumigating a car or house, Selkirk adds.

Image: CDC / Wikimedia

Tags: bedbugs, British Airways, customer service, Travel Safety

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