Evidence of bedbugs at Portland high school raises concerns

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Alliance High School sent home a warning letter to all families after a single bedbug set off some serious concern this week.

Students in Jerry Eaton's reading class spotted the critter on Monday morning.

"It was flat, dark and brown," said Eaton. "Nobody touched it. It's gross!"

Eaton scraped it up with an index card, sealed it inside a plastic CD-ROM case, and brought it to the school office.

A pest control company confirmed it was a live bedbug, according to principal Lorna Fast Buffalo Horse.

Fast Buffalo Horse says the company's bedbug-sniffing-dog, Piper, alerted on nine student lockers and a room with bags of donated clothes.

The company used heat and steam to kill bugs and their remaining eggs.

"We sent a letter home in English and Spanish. We followed up with an email," said Fast Buffalo Horse. "For those nine lockers, we made personal phone calls to those families. People seem to understand this was not a reason to panic, just a reason to keep your eye on the situation."

The school also sent parents this link with resources on bedbug prevention and cleaning.