Health

Vector Control to monitor store’s rat problem

  • Measures have been put in place to tackle rats at Arnold’s on St John’s Road in Pembroke (File photograph)

Rats filmed scurrying across the grounds of a central parish grocery store have prompted Vector Control teams to introduce weekly inspections at the site.

The rodents were caught on camera in the trash area outside Arnold’s Family Market in Pembroke.

Video footage circulated on social media last week and a government spokeswoman said later that pest experts put down poison to tackle the problem.

Frank Arnold, the supermarket’s owner, explained on Friday: “We are aware and troubled by the video circulating on social media of rodents in the area of our trash compactor.

“We had already contacted Bermuda Government Vector Control to set baits to help rectify the rodent problem around our trash compactor area, which has been dealt with.

“Our customers can be assured we are tackling this issue to eliminate the presence of rodents by the exterior compactor area.”

The clip, which appeared to have been taken from inside a car, showed an outdoor area with a blue trash compactor.

A number of rats could be seen scuttling across the ground beside parked bikes and into shrubbery. People can be heard squealing and one described the rodents as “a family” as they watched the creatures.

A Department of Health spokeswoman said on Friday: “Inspectors from Vector Control went to Arnold’s on St John’s Road today based on the video footage circulating and have advised the manager of several items that are required for rodent control in the area near the dumpsters.

“Arnold’s management have been instructed to clean the dumpster area that has caused this outbreak as an attractant and food source.

“Vector Control has deployed rat poison in this area. Vector Control inspectors will do weekly checks.”

She added that people with commercial properties were reminded to make sure they had “sufficient and adequate means of storing and removal” of all refuse or trash.

The spokeswoman said: “Make sure that all garbage and in particular foodstuffs are not allowed to accumulate to an unacceptable level.

“Keep all refuse containers firmly covered at all times in order to deny access to rodents.

“Ensure that all refuse containers are cleaned regularly so as not to be attractive to rodents.

“Residents are to make sure that all garbage or refuse is not allowed to accumulate near your property. Only leave out your rubbish on the day of collection. If you need to dispose of rubbish at any other time, you can of course access the waste disposal facilities at Tynes Bay.

“Do not dump rubbish in hedges, ditches or gardens — this is illegal and may involve legal action being taken against the culprit.

“Be careful not to drop any food items around your home or when out and about. Always use the bins provided.”

Residents and business operators with concerns about rats were asked to call Vector Control on 278-5397