NORMAL, IL—Rivian Automotive is taking action after workers reported bedbugs on forklifts at its assembly plant here.
Zach Dietmeier, senior manager of plant communication and policy at Rivian, told the Pantagraph, Normal’s daily newspaper, that the company received reports of bugs on forklifts in an isolated area of the plant.
“These impacted teams have been notified,” he said. “We investigate every report and take appropriate actions per our pest control contractor.”
Bedbugs are tiny pests that can cause itchy bites, but they do not carry disease. They spread easily, but are often difficult and expensive to eliminate.
Rivian has hired a professional pest control company. All forklifts in the affected area have been quarantined and treated, and other forklifts and tuggers were treated as a preventative measure, Dietmeier said.
Additionally, all transportation shuttles and warehouse spaces have been treated, although no bugs have been found in either location.The Pantagraph was contacted about the situation by multiple Rivian employees, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of concern for their jobs. One worker described seeing multiple forklifts parked with signs that said “Bedbugs, Do Not Use,” and plastic bags over the seats.