Exmouth family find ‘rat-isfaction’ after rodents are eradicated
PUBLISHED: 11:00 16 April 2013
An Exmouth family plagued by rats is finally able to sleep easy after the rodents were sent packing by pest control experts
A Withycombe family plagued for years by rats invading their home were forced into temporary accommodation while pest control experts were sent in.
Five months ago mum-of-three Emma Davey came to the Journal as a ‘last resort’ because rats were invading her housing association-owned home, through the downstairs loo and kitchen units, writes Becca Gliddon.
Although Devon & Cornwall Housing secured pipework and filled holes at the family’s Nursery Mews home, the rats returned and Emma was once more ‘pushed from pillar to post’, in her quest to get rid of the vermin.
Emma, who sufferers from depression, recently returned home with her family after several weeks away in temporary accommodation while work to eradicate the rats was carried out.
The family’s kitchen and downstairs toilet have been ripped out and garden shed removed to prevent the rats from returning.
Emma said: “It’s taken four years and put my family through absolute hell. I have been constantly fighting to get anywhere.
“Devon & Cornwall Housing have been slack and done anything to avoid responsibility for the problem.”
Emma originally spoke to the Journal at the end of 2012 because rats were daily coming into the house and she feared for the safety of her two-year-old daughter Millie.
The housing association subsequently carried out work in the family home, blocking rat holes – but within weeks the vermin had got back inside the house.
This time around 16 sachets of rat bait have been laid. A new kitchen is being fitted after rats chewed through the old units. The downstairs toilet has been ripped out, and pipes and holes blocked, stopping rats from making their daily appearance.
And a shed in the garden, where it is thought the vermin were coming through from beneath, has been ripped out and the area concreted over.
Emma said she, her two children, Joshua, 15, and Jessica, 12, partner Rob, 35, and their daughter Millie are on tenterhooks, waiting for the vermin to return.
She said: “Having no rats is obviously nice, but it’s almost like you are waiting – you don’t actually believe they have gone yet. I am in limbo really. We have had it for four years. I am half waiting for them to find another route.
“It’s lovely to be back at home but I am not confident that they have gone yet.”
A spokeswoman for Devon & Cornwall Housing said: “We have undertaken extensive work at Miss Davey’s home to address the vermin issue. This has included employing the expertise of a specialist pest control firm to carry out treatment.
“We have also worked alongside the council’s environmental health office to investigate the wider area. They have written to all residents to offer advice on preventative measures that can be taken to reduce the risk of vermin being attracted in the future.
“Our team has remained committed to supporting and keeping Miss Davey updated regarding the work being done to her property and to address any concerns she may have.”
l Emma and her family want to thank the staff at the Barn Hotel, Exmouth, for looking after them.