Nightly News | September 21, 2010
BRIAN WILLIAMS, anchor: Finally here tonight during the dinner hour, bedbugs . We have covered their slow and nasty march across this country, every little one of them. They are such a big problem now, invading homes, hotels, college dorms, even stores, movie theaters. It's officially an epidemic, and as you can imagine they are the talk of the bug gathering going on right now in Chicago , a special summit devoted to finding and killing the insidious pests, from which our own Kevin Tibbles reports for us tonight.
KEVIN TIBBLES reporting: Tiny, blood thirsty and biting their way across America . And these are the people who stop them in their tracks, in Chicago , at the first national bedbug summit, no less, where one can learn all sorts of ways to snuff the critters out. You can freeze them.
Unidentified Man #1: And that is minus 100 degrees Fahrenheit .
TIBBLES: Minus 100 degrees Fahrenheit , so if you're a bedbug you are...
Man #1: Toast or frozen.
TIBBLES: If you want to toast them, there's the ThermEx heat remediation solution. What are you doing to them?
Unidentified Man #2: We're frying them.
TIBBLES: Or the bedbug inferno.
Mr. COREY WESTRUM (Insect Inferno): Instead of throwing your stuff away, let us heat treat it in our trailer at 160 degrees and kill them little suckers dead.
TIBBLES: Even special covers to keep them out.
Unidentified Man #3: Well, this is a mattress encasement for bedbug control.
TIBBLES: Hang on a minute. Mattress encasement for bedbug control. Once a worry mainly for international travelers, nowadays bedbugs have been found in all 50 states . And each infested American household will spend between two and $4,000 getting rid of them.
Ms. ANDREA HANCOCK (Mattress Safe): Other parts of the world, they just live with bedbugs . But Americans aren't going to do that.
TIBBLES: But don't be ashamed if you get bit. It isn't a matter of my own personal cleanliness, whether or not I bring bedbugs into my house or not. They come anyway.
Mr. PHIL COOPER (Bed Bug Central CEO): The cleanest people in the world get bedbugs . The best hotels in the world get bedbugs . The best office buildings get bedbugs .
TIBBLES: Don't get embarrassed, get Scooby . And what does Scooby do?
Offscreen Voice: Good boy!
TIBBLES: He sniffs out the bedbugs . And once he does you can get even.
Man #1: They want to get your blood.
TIBBLES: And you want to freeze them.
Man #1: I want to freeze them to death.
TIBBLES: All in a day 's work in the bedbug biz. Kevin Tibbles, NBC News, Chicago .
WILLIAMS: They're coming for all of us.