BBC radio described the infestation of flies in Llanelli as being of ‘Biblical proportions’. The flies provided misery and suffering for thousands of  householders in Llanelli and some businesses also suffered, especially catering establishments.

The likely source of the flies we are told has been found and centres on a recycling plant close to the affected areas in Seaside.

Residents have questioned why the council took so long to find the source given that they had indicated on numerous occasions that the plant was the likely source.

We have not had any answers to those types of questions but local councillors have gone on social media thanking council officers for their work.

Some are highlighting the fact that they are now paying more for less services as the council makes cuts to essential services. The rat catcher is one of those such services.

Complaints of lanes littered with un-emptied bins, fly tipping and uncleaned streets and drains will surely be an attractive proposition for the resident rats of Llanelli.

Robert Browning’s fairy tale story of the Pied Piper of Hamlin may just become a reality, minus the theft of the children of course as our Llanelli mayor would  never renege on his obligations.

RATS! We hear you cry. Yes, rats and plenty of them, this time in the leafy suburb of Browen in Llwynhendy according to the correspondence we have received.

The letter we received today reads as follows:

I sent an email to councillors in 2016. The amount of rats has gone up now. Our daughter found a dead one in the garden last week and it took the council 3 days before sending someone out to get the body – and that was only due to our local councillor Sharen Davies phoning herself. We had a rat running through the kitchen a few weeks ago. Again took the council 3 days to come out. Other neigbours have found massive dead rats in their gardens. When I phoned the council to ask them to remove it I had ‘can you not pick it up and put it in your bin’ and also ‘can you not shovel it up and chuck it at the back of your garden’.

The email I sent to the council reads:

We have been living in hell and no-one is willing to help us. We have rats in the walls, under the kitchen cupboard by the sink, under the bath and under the floorboards. They have also been in the attic.

When my daughter was around 6 months old we had roughly 250 – 300 maggots fall through our bathroom ceiling and turn into flies, we could not even sleep upstairs so h ad to spend three nights sleeping in our living room. The council refused to do anything so we had to phone social services, they eventually got the council to come out and sort the issues out – They haven’t!

In the last 6 and a half years we have caught coming close to 20 rats – in the house. It is horrific, when you are sat at the family dinner table and you can hear a rat chewing in the cavity next to you.. the problem is we are the end house of a group of four terraced and they are entering in other homes also and coming over to ours.

The council carried out work last year on the drainage system outside as they were adamant that was causing the rats (which we had previously informed them there was no way it could be as they were chewing their way through) They asked if they could use our garden as access to reach the other three houses (we agreed on this on two conditions, the dog stayed out the back – we did cordon him off and that our garden gets done afterwards as the other houses had new lawns done and their gardens were put back lovely) our dog was let out on one occasion which left a search for 6 hours to find him and on the second occasion he was strapped by the neck with a ratchet strap with not even a meter of room to move! They also left our garden in such a state that when our housing officer finally came out to the house she agreed that it was not safe for our daughter to be out there but also refused to do anything about it because as she explained “we work” and apparently because we are both working we would have to pay half of the total cost to get it done – bearing in mind in the four houses that are together we are the only ones who do work and the only ones who had ours left in a state.

We have now had to get back in contact with them as there was another dead rat under my sink, they have come out and are finally saying they are willing to do work in the house.  They were unsure where the rats were coming from as they had filled all the visible holes outside the property, so with Steve from preventapest we smashed a hole in the kitchen wall and with that we found they were 100% coming up from the foundations of the house.

We contacted Carmarthenshire County Council and asked the following questions:

What is the current position of the council regarding control of rats in the county?
“Carmarthenshire County Council’s public protection team does not currently provide a pest control treatment service, but does provide advice to owners and occupiers of any land or premises affected by pests; investigates and monitors pest complaints and ensures proper regulation of pest control services as part of its statutory duties.

“Treatment services, which the council previously provided at a charge, were stopped in 2011. Since then, there has been no noticeable increase in pests in Carmarthenshire, however as part of a regular review of services, the council may give consideration to re-introducing pest control as a chargeable service.

“For further information on our pest control advice service, please visit our website.”

When cuts were made to pest control were residents discounted that amount from their council tax payments?

“It was a chargeable service so did not receive funding from council tax contributions.”

Does the council outsource any of its pest control for its own properties?

“No, we do our own in-house for our housing stock.”

Does the council have any issues with rats at any of their properties?

“No more than any other authority.”

Does the council accept any responsibility for dealing with the rats, e.g a duty of care to council tenants?

“Where pest enter properties due to structural issues we liaise with our housing team to raise repair requests. If it’s a tenant’s issue we provide advice on better management of waste at their property to prevent re-occurrence.”

For anyone looking for help and advice in dealing with rats you can contact Alpha Pest Control

Llanelli based Alpha Pest Control, established for 20 years provide professional, prompt, cost effective pest control to Llanelli, Swansea, Carmarthen, Neath and surrounding areas.  We launched these cheaper, fixed price, solutions to the growing problem of household and commercial pests across the region.

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