Facilities Management

Masa teams are equipped to combat any pest control issue.

Masa teams are equipped to combat any pest control issue.

Masa tools ensure pest-free facilities

August 2016

Ensuring environmental health and safety is a key aspect of facility management. MOHAMMAD ARIF HUSSAIN* outlines the role played by integrated pest management in this field.

Facility management is an interdisciplinary field devoted to the maintenance and care of commercial or institutional buildings to ensure their safe, secure, and environmentally-sound operations in a cost-effective manner aimed at the long-term preservation of their asset value.

The discipline of facility management and the role of facility managers in particular is evolving to the extent that many managers have to operate at two levels: strategic-tactical and operational. In the former case, owners need to be informed about the potential impact of their decisions on the provision of space and services. In the latter, it is the role of a facility manager to ensure proper operation of all aspects of a building to create an optimal environment for the occupants to function. This is accomplished by managing some of the following activities:

• Environmental health and safety: This includes waste removal; occupational health and safety regulations (in buildings such as hospitals); and hazardous material compliance. Also included here is building cleanliness, a sub-discipline of facility management involving routine cleaning (of restrooms, common areas, etc) with specific emphasis on dust control and hygiene maintenance.

Dust control is also an increasing concern and is crucial for providing a “safer and healthier environment for employees and customers”. The National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases notes that dust mites are a common cause of perennial allergic rhinitis, an affliction that affects millions of peoples throughout the world.

• Mechanical systems: While maintaining mechanical systems, facility managers need to ensure optimum temperature and humidity inside the facility to prevent pest proliferation.

• Life safety systems: Smoke fire systems must be switched off while receiving pest control services especially inside fogging/misting.


Holistic approach

Integrated pest management (IPM) is an effective and environmentally sensitive approach that uses current, comprehensive information on the lifecycles of pests and their interaction with the environment. This information in combination with available pest control methods, are used to manage pest damage by the most economical means, and with the least possible hazard to people, property, and the environment.

Once monitoring, identification, and action thresholds indicate that pest control is required, and preventive methods are no longer effective or available, IPM programmes then evaluate the proper control method both for effectiveness and risk. Effective, less risky pest controls are chosen first, including highly targeted chemicals, such as pheromones to disrupt pest mating, or mechanical control such as trapping or weeding. If further monitoring, identifications and action thresholds indicate that less risky controls are not working, then additional pest control methods would be employed, such as targeted spraying of pesticides. Broadcast spraying of non-specific pesticides is a last resort.

An important tool of IPM concept is proper identification of pests by entomologists. Preventative actions must be taken at the correct time if they are to be effective. Once the pest is correctly identified, monitoring must begin before it becomes a problem. For example, in school cafeterias where cockroaches may be expected to appear, sticky traps are set out before school starts. Traps are checked at regular intervals so populations can be monitored and controlled before they get out of hand.

Acme Gel with the active ingredient Imidacloprid provides IPM solutions in highly sophisticated environments like hospitals, kitchens, restaurants, hotels, food facilities, etc and will kill roaches slowly without overuse of pesticide spray. Bait formulations are now in high demand by pest control operators (PCO) and required by clients for the total eradication of cockroaches from their premises. Baits offer several advantages over other insecticide formulations in the control of populations of the different cockroaches. After consuming a lethal dose of bait, cockroaches return to their harborage where they excrete faeces containing Imidacloprid. As other cockroaches consume the contaminated faeces, they too receive the lethal dose. When these pests die, other cockroaches may consume their carcass and die as well. This means gel bait preparations are much faster in action, have long-lasting effects and high temperature resistance with excellent adhesion.

There is also high demand for odourless chemicals for termite control like Raslan Plus 30.5 per cent SC. It creates a non-detectable treated zone that functions not as a repellent zone/barrier, but as a “killing field” whose effects may be transmissible to other termites and leads to the contamination of the colony. It is more economical compared to other traditional termiticides like Chlorpyrifos (banned in Saudi Arabia and several other countries). Only 2.1 ml Imidacloprid needs to be mixed with one litre of water compared to 50 ml of other termiticides.

Termiticides must be used for proofing under-construction buildings. However, if a building has already been constructed and not proofed for termites, then it has to take advantage of termite control services by drilling and injecting of chemicals including the wall periphery to prevent termite invasion.


* MOHAMMAD ARIF HUSSAIN is an entomologist at Masa Establishment of Saudi Arabia. Based in Jeddah, Masa Establishment is owned by Mousaied S Al Shieshakly, who is also the general manager. One of the biggest pest control companies in Saudi Arabia with 12 branches across the kingdom, the company offers professional and reliable services to facilities management companies delivered by an expert team of highly skilled pest control technicians. Masa has a proven track record of 36 years of experience.

More Stories