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City Aiding Norwood Residents in Rat Control Efforts

[CREDIT: Google Map Data] The village of Norwood has been experiencing an increase in rat reports for the last two months.
[CREDIT: Google Map Data] The village of Norwood has been experiencing an increase in rat reports for the last two months.
WARWICK, R.I. — Norwood residents have been dealing with an increase in rat sightings and complaints for the last two months, a problem that will take the community’s combined efforts throughout the summer to solve, Warwick Building Official Al DeCorte says.

The uptick in rat reports could be the result of construction nearby the neighborhood at TF Green Airport, or the result of the rodents taking advantage of exposed food and handy shelter opportunities, DeCorte said.

“There’s a lot of situations that would attract rats or mice, and construction could be one of them,” DeCorte said.

Regardless of why the rats are around, it will take the community cooperating to make the neighborhood less hospitable to the rodents by making food more scarce and limiting areas where they can hide.

Warwick City Councilman Jeremy Rix, whose district includes Norwood, said he and other neighbors believe the construction has disturbed the animals and sent them into the area.

“I am glad to see that the City taking quick action to address this new problem.  Rodents have never been a problem around here as far back as people here remember, and few have actually seen them,” Rix said.

Rix said the problem is being handled by two departments: the Building Department’s Property Maintenance (formerly known as Minimum Housing) office, and the Department of Public Works.

Property Maintenance is issuing notices and fines to residents and businesses, working with property owners to clean up their properties, and the DPW is handling any work that needs to be done on City-owned land, and laying traps on outdoor private property with the owners’ permission.

The city has also sent residents letters with instructions on how to discourage rats from gathering in the neighborhood. An excerpt of the letter reads:

As we continue our shared efforts to ensure the continued safety and well-being of our residents, and the attractiveness of our community, I would ask that you join the City in its work to further address this problem. There are many simple steps that can be taken to help in this effort:

  • Remove anything that maybe a feeding source such as birdfeed, dogfood, table scraps, etc.
  • Make sure trash is in containers and covers are kept closed and containers are not overflowing
  • Keep wood piles a minimum of a foot off the ground, and a minimum of a foot away from any property lines or structures to keep rodents from living in them
  • Block areas under sheds, foundations, and the like to prevent access and harboring

Our Office of Property Maintenance has been working with residents to address this issue of concern. Should you have questions, or wish to report a rodent problem on your property, please call 738-2012.

DeCorte said if the whole community follows the recommendations, it may take a few months for the rats to seek a more hospitable area.

Rob Borkowski
Author: Rob Borkowski

Rob has worked as reporter and editor for several publications, including The Kent County Daily Times and Coventry Courier, before working for Gatehouse in MA then moving home with Patch Media. Now he's publisher and editor of Contact him at [email protected] with tips, press releases, advertising inquiries, and concerns.

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