Is Monthly Pest Control Necessary?
When it comes to pests, the question often posed is – is prevention better than cure? If you can’t see pests, does it mean that they aren’t there? The services of a regular proactive pest control plan, delivered by a competent professional company, can help prevent problems before they even begin.
Why Might I Need To Employ Regular Pest Control?
Pests need similar creature comforts to survive as we do. Warmth, a food and water source and a place to call home. Pests are attracted to our homes and businesses, no matter how fastidious we are about cleanliness and hygiene, by the very nature of the activities that take place and the general design of buildings. Small cracks, uncovered vents, leaks and food disposal areas all provide those necessities for pests.
Pests not only pose risks to health, their presence and activities can be costly too with rodents happily chewing through wood and wires, moths and their larvae damaging carpets and clothes and other pests such as silverfish happily munching their way through your paper items – including the wallpaper! A quick check of your insurance policy might well show you that this damage is not covered. An insurer will likely consider this your problem.
Is There A Legal Requirement For Pest Control?
Although there is no legal requirement to have a regular pest control plan, there is a general duty under The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 to protect employees from workplace hazards, and this could include pest activity which involves potential health or safety risks. Further duties and responsibilities fall under The Prevention of Damage by Pest Act 1949 which gives powers to local authorities to carry out pest control if there is a significant risk of damage from pests. This extends to allow action to be taken if a contamination risk exists for companies that store or manufacture food products. Regulation EC No 852/2004 places a duty on all food businesses to take all reasonable precautions to prevent all pest activity. A proactive pest control contract can assist meet this duty.
Being one step ahead by employing the regular services of professional pest control can help with compliance with legislation for businesses. It can also help protect brand reputation and save money by preventing damage to stock or business premises.
What Can I Do To Prevent Pests In The First Place?
Following good practices to prevent pests in the first place is always the best plan. A few ways that both businesses and homeowners can do this include:
- Ensure that all food is stored in sealed containers, made from chew-proof materials
- Check pipes for cracks or leaks
- Dispose of rubbish regularly and ensure that the rubbish bin is sealed with a tightly closed lid.
- Eliminate any areas of clutter or rubbish where pests can set up home.
- Ensure all external areas of the structure of a building are pest-proofed, with no gaps or defects
- Cover vents with stainless steel mesh
- Businesses should check all incoming stock for pests, whether this is rodents or insects
- Stay on top of cleaning and maintenance – pests love to get down and dirty!
How Often Do I Need A Visit?
The frequency of visits really depends on the type of premises, its location, and the particular
activities being undertaken. High risk premises should have more frequent visits than lower risk ones.
Monthly visits: Premises that have food products, production or service as part of their business should consider a monthly or six weekly visit to stay on top of any likely issues and allow preventive measures to protect any business and its activities. This also applies for the same reasons to any business that has a regular infestation of pests due to being in a high risk location, or undertaking high risk activities.
The presence of certain pests, such as rats, might need a monthly visit to check the type of bait being used (toxic or non-toxic monitoring bait), and check that rats haven’t set up further nests away from the original site. With a female rat having up to 6 litters a year, each with the possibility of 12 pups, 72 rats in one year from just one female rat adds up to…. well, a rather large rat problem that grows exponentially!
Insect pests such as Cockroaches will be another such pest that requires frequent visits to monitor for infestations, especially in food establishments. Cockroaches transmit pathogens such as salmonella and e-coli, simply by contact with any food or food preparation surface or equipment they can cause a potential health hazard.
Quarterly visits: In some situations, a business may benefit even from less frequent visits, just to assist with monitoring and peace of mind.
iX5 Pest Control can visit to undertake a site survey and give bespoke advice on the best contract arrangement for your business. This will include advice on the types of pest that may pose a risk to your business, the best methods for monitoring for these, any control and proofing requirements, and the optimum frequency for routine visits to prevent activity.
Regular Pest Control Services
At iX5 Pest Control we are well placed to assist with all your pest problems as the company is owned and operated by a Chartered Environmental Health Practitioner, with many years’ experience in both food businesses, and in Environmental Health regulatory services. We provide an efficient, friendly commercial pest control service in and around Northampton, Daventry, Towcester, Wellingborough, Kettering, Olney, Rugby, Market Harborough and the surrounding areas and villages. You can call us on 01604 328545 or email [email protected] or complete this short form and we will get back to you as soon as we can.