Maggots, egg larvae prompt closure of Oak Bay library branch

Maggots, egg larvae prompt closure of Oak Bay library branch
The Oak Bay library branch at 1442 Monterey Ave.

The Oak Bay library remains closed after maggots and egg larvae were found in one of the branch’s rooms, according to the Greater Victoria Public Library (GVPL).

Kelly Ridgway, GVPL’s marketing coordinator, says the 24-hour book return room was immediately cordoned off, and pest control and professional cleaning services were called in to sanitize the affected area. But when staff returned the Tuesday after the long weekend, they discovered the problem had not been resolved.

Staff closed the branch at 1442 Monterey Ave. at 1 p.m. Tuesday, and since then has been working with the district “to determine the cause and implement measures to prevent future occurrences,” says Ridgway.

The library remains closed Wednesday, with staff “assessing the situation on a day-by-day basis,” she says in a statement to CHEK News.

Maggots, the larvae of flies, are usually found in decaying organic matter. They are small and worm-like, with no limbs. They’re soft and white, but as they mature, they can turn grey or black, and their bodies harden, according to info online.

“There is no risk to staff or library users,” adds Ridgway.

“We apologize for any inconvenience caused and assure our patrons that their health and safety, along with the health and safety of our staff, are our top priority.”

The GVPL, which operates a dozen branches throughout the region, says a 24-hour temporary book return has been placed in front of the Monterey Centre, which is connected to the Oak Bay library. Hold pickup dates for all items have also been extended amid the closure.

“Updates will be posted on and our social media channels. Thank you for your understanding and patience as we address this issue,” reads a statement.

Last June, following nearly five months of closure, the library in Oak Bay finally reopened after asbestos was removed from inside the building.

Ethan MorneauEthan Morneau

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