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Residents complain of rats the size of cats in Pottsville

POTTSVILLE, SCHUYLKILL COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) -- Residents are complaining about rats the size of cats in a Schuylkill County neighborhood. And while the problem isn't new, people say it's getting so bad they're spending more nights at hotels than in their own homes.
       
"They're [rats] terrorizing the community," said Scott Dronick, concerned resident.

Scott Dronick is talking about rats; invading his home on East Norwegian street in the city of Pottsville. His neighbors are having the same problem.


"They look like the size of a cat. And I have three cats -- they make my cats look like kittens," said Dennis Spotts Senior, another concerned resident.

The rat problem stems from two condemned homes on the block -- now being demolished; pushing the rats into the next home, and onto the streets.
 
"I like to sit on my back porch at night, but i can't sit out there no more... I don't know what's out there," said Spotts.

The rat problem has been going on for about a year, but residents say in recent weeks, it's gotten too bad to bear.


"Now they're attacking children," said Dronick.

Dronick has six kids. His 7-year-old daughter got bit by a rat a few weeks ago and had to get treatment to prevent diseases from the vermin.


"It was a big rat," said Spotts.

Residents showed me the tunnels the rats dig; giving them entry into the walls of their homes. Homeowners also had to switch from plastic garbage cans to metal, because the rats chewed these holes right through the cans to get the garbage. While residents say they've put out poison and traps, nothing seems to be getting the job done.
So now, they're hoping the city can help.


"It's getting bad. It's getting real bad. We just need something done," said Dronick.

I spoke with Frank Spleen, the city's health officer. He says the demolition is the problem. But still -- every week he goes around the city putting bate in the sewers to kill the rats. He says if residents want the city to focus on their neighborhood, they need to make the call.
 

Anyone experiencing a rat problem in their neighborhood in the city of Pottsville is encouraged to call city hall and ask for the health officer. That number is 570-622-1234.

 


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