‘There are rat droppings everywhere’: Residents claim Dublin housing complex ‘over-run’ with rodents

Problems at Teeling Way in East Wall apparently linked to construction work on a nearby site

A 72-bed housing complex in Dublin’s north inner city has, according to residents, become “over-run” by rats since construction work began on a neighbouring development.

Teeling Way, built around 20 years ago on East Road, East Wall, is run by Respond Housing Association, which provides homes for young families and older people.

Residents claim that despite numerous calls, emails and meetings since late last year “nothing has been done to sort out” the growing rat infestation. Respond said it was made aware of complaints regarding rodents at the complex last week.

Leon Macken, a spokesman for some of the residents, said scores of rats have been caught by residents inside their homes. He said that “one person found and killed nine rats inside their apartment in one day”.

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He said he has killed numerous rats after finding them close to where his six-month-old baby is cleaned and dressed.

“There are rat droppings everywhere nearly every morning we wake up in the apartment no matter how many rat traps we set and clean up after,” he added. “Residents even hear the rats scuttling around inside the walls. This problem began about six months ago due to construction work of other apartments taking place next to complex.

“We have been notifying Respond since last October and the situation is just getting worse.”

Edel Grey, who has three young boys and is expecting her fourth child shortly, said she is afraid of “picking up” Weil’s Disease, a potentially fatal infection which can be contracted through contact with blood, urine or tissue of infected animals. She has decided not to allow her sons to play in the yard at the complex.

“We pay €12 per week for services and upkeep of the complex but nothing is being done about this major rat problem,” she said.

In a statement Respond Housing Association said it takes the health and safety of its tenants very seriously.

“We were made aware of complaints regarding the presence of rodents at Teeling Way development on Wednesday, 14th February,” it said. “In response to these concerns, we engaged a professional vermin control contractor who conducted an initial site visit on Friday 16th and are on-site again today to continue addressing the issue.”

Respond said it was inspecting the complex to ensure that an appropriate number of controls are placed to effectively manage the rodent population.

“There is extensive construction activities surrounding Teeling Way and this may have contributed to the situation. We have communicated with the developer of the adjacent property, who has also implemented vermin control measures to help reduce the number of rodents in the area,” it added.

Independent councillor Christy Burke said “the state of the complex is the worst he has ever seen in all the years I have served as a public representative”. It is understood that Dublin City Council has asked Respond for a meeting to discuss services at the complex.

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