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When you think about the city of Baltimore, what comes to mind? Crab cakes? The Wire? The harbor and history? There’s certainly a lot this Maryland city is known for, but recent numbers from pest control company Orkin may make people think of something else when they hear Charm City.

Orkin released their annual list of the “Top 50 Bed Bug Cities,” and for the second year in a row, Baltimore is on top. Washington, D.C. was right behind them, with Chicago in the three spot, Los Angeles at number 4, and Columbus, Ohio rounding out the top 5.

This list is based on the number of bed bug treatments the company performed in 2017, counting both commercial and residential buildings. Looking at the data, we can learn a few things. The little critters seem to prefer the East Coast/Midwest, and don’t have a problem living in especially cold or warm climates.

As far as the top 50 overall goes, there were two newcomers: New Orleans and Flint, Michigan. Orlando fell off the list totally.

Here’s a look at the top 10 cities for bed bugs in 2017

10: Dallas-Fort Worth
9. San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose
8. New York
7. Detroit
6. Cincinnati
5. Columbus, Ohio
4. LA
3. Chicago
2. Washington, D.C.
1. Baltimore

While the cities on your list may have your skin tingling if you have a trip planned, don’t let it stop you from going. There are a few tips you can try to help drastically reduce the chances of your luggage or clothing being infested. For starters, put your bags in the bathtub. Silly, I know, but the bugs can’t climb the tub’s slippery surface. Check the area around your bed and floor for tell-tale signs of bedbugs (tiny, ink-colored stains) and don’t leave dirty laundry lying around on the floor, as that’s a great way to transfer bed bugs back to your home.

Artie Beaty

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