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British Pest Control Association

FMs urged to put safety first with wasps this summer

The British Pest Control Association (BPCA) is flagging up safety issues surrounding wasps to facilities managers.

As the summer heat soars and more people embrace the outdoors, the BPCA expects to see a rise in wasp activity.

As a result, the Association is urging FMs across the UK to be pest aware and protect their assets by taking a proactive approach, which puts safety at the heart of their operations.

Natalie Bungay, BPCA’s Technical Officer, said: “Commercial and public sector premises can be affected by a wasp outbreak.

“If service users and visitors experience a high level of wasp activity, then complaints are likely to ensue.

“This alone is damaging, and if a staff member or customer gets a sting, or worse still, receives multiple stings, then the presence of wasps can be seen as detrimental to public health.

“The matter becomes serious if a sting sends someone into anaphylaxis, a severe, potentially life-threatening allergic reaction.

“Even if someone has been stung by a wasp before and not had a severe reaction, it doesn’t mean that they cannot have a bad reaction if stung again.”

BPCA has a range of information to provide further insight and help FMs become more pest aware.

The new ‘Worried About Wasps’ guide, at https://bpca.org.uk/wasps gives an overview of information including biology and behaviour, prevention and control.

The guide is free to read, download and print. A short video guide is also available to view at https://bpca.org.uk/wasps.

Bungay added: “If an organisation is troubled by wasps on their premises, it could point to the fact that a nest is nearby.

“It’s important to note that not every wasps’ nest needs destroying. For example, if it’s well away from a building or in a rarely used part of the garden where disturbance is unlikely, it might be best to leave it alone.

“However, when wasps are causing a nuisance or endangering human health, then steps may need to be taken.

“By appointing a pest management professional, facilities managers can take steps to protect staff, customers and visitors, and minimise disruption to the business.

“They have the technical knowledge and access to a range of professional products which are not available to the public to tackle the issue effectively.

“They’ll have appropriate protective equipment, and professionals can work in an environment that focuses on safety, not just for themselves, but the people and environment around them.”

If FMs need help with wasps, BPCA’s ‘Find a pest controller tool’, available at https://bpca.org.uk/find shows only pest management companies with the correct insurances, fully qualified technicians and who have been audited to the British and European standard in pest management.