A brief video submitted to MTL Blog by Instagram user @sssareenak shows what appears to be a bed bug crawling across the seat of an STM bus in Montreal. The video was taken on Friday July 5th on the 968 bus, which runs between the Côte-Vertu orange line metro station and the Gare Roxboro-Pierrefonds.
An exterminator tells MTL Blog that though the video is too low quality to determine with 100% certainty the identity of the bug, a quick assessment suggests it is, indeed, a bed bug.
We reached out to the STM to inquire specifically about bed bugs on this bus line and, more generally, bed bugs on any vehicle in the STM network.
In response, an agency spokesperson explained only that “we regularly evaluate the cleanliness of buses and trains. When such a situation is brought to our attention, we quickly remove the vehicle from service and take the necessary measures.”
They further explain that bus interiors are washed every 42 days.
The short video of the alleged bed bug is below:
If this is, in fact, a bed bug, this would not be the first time the insect was found on public property.
Last year, an infestation of bed bugs at the Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec (BAnQ) forced officials to remove most upholstered furniture from the enormous complex in downtown Montreal.
Plastic chairs replaced couches until exterminators were able to eradicate the pests.
Bed bugs, according to a page on the government of Canada website, “are small, wingless insects that feed on the blood of people and animals while they sleep.”
“A bedbug bite can take as long as 14 days to appear, depending on the person. While bites can happen anywhere on the skin, they are often found on the face, neck, arms, legs, and chest.”
There is no indication that bed bugs have spread on the STM network. This appears to have been an isolated incident.