Feb 7, 2019
Karma. Update to this story.
All carpets at Los Angeles City Hall may need to be replaced amid a Typhus outbreak that may have infected one city employee while at work, according to a motion filed by Council President Herb Wesson on Wednesday.
Wesson first became aware of a vermin issue in November 2018, contacted pest control experts and removed all his office’s carpets, according to the motion.
The motion reported cleanup issues and a noticeable increase in rodents in the area, which could have contributed to the outbreak.
Los Angeles county health officials first reported a Typhus outbreak in downtown Los Angeles in October 2018, the year there were 142 Typhus cases in Los Angeles County alone, according to a study by the California Department of Public Health.
Typhus is a deadly bacterial disease that is typically transmitted through fleas that have been infected by rodents.
Symptoms include high fever, chills, headaches, muscle aches, rashes, and in some severe cases, internal bleeding. The disease can be treated with antibiotics, according to the California Department of Public Health.
Wesson’s motion asks for a report on the scope of vermin and pest control issues at City Hall, and instructs city staff to report back with a cost estimate for removing all carpets in the building and an assessment of all live plants in any city building.
Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office issued a statement saying that multiple city departments began a coordinated effort to improve cleanliness in Civic Center last fall.
“In addition to increased trash collection and cleanings, aggressive action has been taken to address pests both in the buildings and in the surrounding outside areas,” the statement said.
On Thursday, city workers were seen power-washing the sidewalk outside City Hall, cleaning up piles of trash and filling in rat burrows in the surrounding area.
An email was sent out to all city employees telling them not to leave food out in their work area and to take out the trash daily.
Thank You WZ and KTLA