Welp, This Navy Submarine Is Infested With Bedbugs – Popular Mechanics

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Imagine hurtling through the worlds oceans trapped in a steel tube thats 350 feet long by 40 feet wide. You eat, sleep, and work in the tube with 110 other people, all doing their part to prepare the ship for war and prevent the vessel from sinking to the bottom of the ocean and running into an underwater mountain. Its a stressful, difficult place to be for months at a time.

Now, add bedbugs to the mix.

For most of last year, sailors assigned to the USS Connecticut say their submarine suffered a serious bedbug infestation, and the U.S. Navy didnt do enough to prevent it. The sailors told the Navy Times theyve been complaining about the bedbugs since March 2020, but according to Popular Military, the Navy said the sailors only first reported the problem in December 2020, and the service didnt find any bedbugs onboard until February 2021.

The Navy says it properly addressed the infestation, but the sailors claim the service took insufficient measures and used them as live bait to see if the bugs remained after the measures took place. The sailors allege their command didnt believe their initial report of the infestation, and the services attempts to steam bunks and apply pesticides failed to kill the pests.

Bedbugs are small, parasitic insects that feed off the blood of humans. The bugs typically live in mattresses and bedding, a problem exacerbated on a submarine where two sailors might alternate sleeping in the same space.

The insects were largely killed off in the U.S. after the invention of the pesticide DDT. In recent years, however, the bugs have gradually returned. Since the U.S. banned DDT on environmental grounds in 1972, there are few easy, effective treatments for killing the insects. (Bedbugs are now DDT-resistant, anyway.)

The Connecticut is one of three Seawolf-class submarines, which many experts consider to be the most capable attack subs in the world. The Seawolf subs hulls are made of advanced HY-100 steel alloy, and they can reportedly dive to 2,000 feet.

The vessels are also reportedly up to 70 times quieter than their predecessors, the Los Angeles class, and have eight torpedo tubes and carry up to 50 guided torpedoes.

As capable as the Connecticut is, the bedbugsand the Navys responsereportedly led to plummeting morale aboard the ship. It goes to show you can spend $3 billion on a single submarine, but if you dont treat a bedbug infestation, you wont get your moneys worth from the ship.

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Welp, This Navy Submarine Is Infested With Bedbugs - Popular Mechanics

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