UPPER MANHATTAN, N.Y. (PIX11) — A shocking video shows a parade of rats make their way into a woman’s stove inside her New York City apartment. The infestation has gotten so out of control that Yovanka Landa can no longer cook in her kitchen.
“Why should we live in this condition,” Landa told PIX11 News on Thursday.
She counted 13 rats in the six-minute video she took of her kitchen earlier this week. She and her fellow tenants in Harlem squirm, watching it.
“We’re tired. I’m tired of running from rats,” said tenant board member Margaret Thomas.
“They would grab onto the bottom of our pants when we’re walking,” said tenant board member Michelle James.
The tenants believe the source of the rat problem is coming from plastic garbage cans next to the building. There used to be metal containers there, but once they were replaced, that’s when the tenants said the rats began congregating, being able to easily access the first-floor apartments through the windows.
The rats bite through the window screen and help themselves inside and make their way throughout the entire building.
“The management [doesn’t] want to do anything. We’ve called them, we’ve sent emails, and nothing has been done,” said Thomas.
PIX11 News contacted the management office, and they said, “no comment.”
“My son sleeps in his room, but now he can’t because he hears them underneath his bed. This is not fair for us. It’s unhealthy,” said Landa. “I have a daughter who has asthma. I have a sister who’s pregnant.”
Landa said an exterminator installed a metal screen after rats ate their way through the wall behind the fridge and chewed the wire. All their food, including medication that has to stay cold, went bad.
Another screen was also put in by a tree to prevent the rats from entering the building from underground.
“They don’t run. They walk like they own the street at night,” Landa said.
Landa and her family have lived in the six-bedroom apartment for 25 years and they said leaving is not an option. Tenants are considering a rent strike if conditions don’t improve.