Investigation into threat to public health in Carrick-on-Shannon

Rats spotted around Hartley

Leitrim Observer Reporter


Leitrim Observer Reporter

A threat to public health in relation to sewerage and rats at Hartley, Carrick-on-Shannon is going to be investigated by the Environmental Department of Leitrim County Council.

Independent Cllr Des Guckian asked council officials to explain how they have dealt with the seepage of sewerage into the marsh near the block of flats and offices at Hartley, on the Leitrim Road, Carrick-on-Shannon. He sated “There seems to be widespread threat to public health in that general area.”

The council told Carrick-on-Shannon councillors they had not been informed of any current problems with pollution at this location. The Environmental Department will investigate this complaint to establish the facts and take whatever subsequent action is deemed necessary.

Cllr Guckian said he did not understand how the council were unaware of the situation, since there has been problems in this area “for years.” He said he understood sewerage pipes were broken and the Leitrim Fire Service has assessed the area.
He also said during recent drainage works a “rat infestation” was found and bait was laid down. He said he understands there is an “ongoing problem” with rats in the area. He noted just two weeks ago the public witnessed a “big rat” cross the road from the HSE site where works were ongoing.

Director of Services Joseph Gilhooly said the premises at Hartley are in private ownership, it was also clarified that the road is private.
He said “it is not unusual to get vermin in urban areas.”

Council engineer Darragh O'Boyle said drainage works were carried out in the Carrick-on-Shannon area earlier this year on the back of new funding.

Cllr Guckian said he though it quite unusual to find a rat infestation.
He called the creatures “smart” and said they “don't just happen to be there”.
He said there is something attracting them to the area and he suggested it was raw sewerage.

Signs of a rat infestation

The HSE says controlling and eliminating pests such as rats is important as they are not only unpleasant but may pose a danger to health.
Rentokill, a pest control company says rats are well known to spread disease, damage property and contaminate food and animal feed.

If rats are able to get into your home or business, they can introduce disease carrying parasites like fleas, lice and ticks. It is most likely to see rats between dusk and dawn, you may also see rat droppings, footprints, burrows, rubbings or hear scratching noises.

Also read: New public car park open in Carrick-on-Shannon