Typhus At LA City Hall! Fleas Infected By Rats, All Carpeting Junked

Modesto Morganelli
Febbraio 9, 2019

City Council President Herb Wesson has asked staff to report on the scope of current vermin problems in the Los Angeles Civic Centre complex, which is the main site of the current outbreak.

Wesson's motion says there has been a "noticeable increase in the volume of rodents in the area and within city buildings", and also referenced a recent report by NBC4, which featured a City Hall East employee who is convinced she contracted typhus in November through contact with fleas in her City Hall East office.

A typhus outbreak in Downtown Los Angeles, has officials considering removing the carpets at City Hall.

'Employees shouldn't have to come to work anxious about rodents, ' Wesson said to the LA Times. "I intend to do whatever it is we need".

Workers have reportedly seen evidence of rats in multiple offices, including tiny paw prints on desks and signs that the rodents were nesting in potted plants. Outside, a rat was recently spotted gnawing through a pumpkin put out for decoration at the building's Halloween party.

Typhus is a deadly bacterial disease typically spread by fleas that have been infected by rodents.

According to the Times, a deputy city attorney contracted typhus past year and had a 102-degree fever.

The motion follows a typhus outbreak in Los Angeles County in October during which health officials warned people to avoid wild animals, including rats.

Greenwood never thought showing up for work at City Hall could leave her fighting for her life.

"I am actually terrified of entering the building again until they do something", she told the news outlet. Humans can contract the illness through flea bites or the feces of the infected insects, when it's rubbed into cuts or scrapes in the skin, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Wesson's motion includes a call for an audit of all the live plants in every city-owned and city-operated building, including the varieties that "are most attractive to vermin".

The motion also suggests exploring the drafting of a policy that would require all city employees to secure their food after hours and require custodial services to dispose of all food left out by any employee.

In a typical case of typhus, symptoms are much like those of the flu, including headaches, a high temperature, dry coughs, vomiting, and joint pain.

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