Rat forces family to flee home
A BIG black rat forced a young Valleyfield mum and her two tots to flee their home in the middle of the night.
Stacey McMurdo (20) became hysterical after spotting the vermin on a pillow in the bed she shares with 12-month-old son Michael in the early hours of Monday.
She refused to return home because Fife Council could not send out pest control workers to deal with the problem that day.
It was not until Tuesday that workers set traps and poison, meaning the house was still off-limits to her kids.
She said, "I was putting Michael up the stairs at about 1am on Monday morning.
"I lifted the covers back and thought I saw something, the next minute I see a rat sitting up on the pillow staring right at me on the bairn's pillow. It was huge.
"I walked right back out the room. I was hysterical at this point and phoned my sister and she had to come over and get my daughter, Kacey, out of the bedroom."
They fled in their jammies to her mum's house, also in Leighton Street.
Stacey called the council on Monday morning to ask them to come out to help ensure the rat had left the two-bedroom house.
She added, "They said they could send someone out within one working day. I asked if they could make it any quicker because I have two bairns and we can't stay there. But he still said he could only do it from one working day."
Stacey blamed rubbish that is often dumped at the side of her house for attracting rats and which she has previously complained to the council about.
West Fife Villages councillor Bobby Clelland contacted the council on the family's behalf and confirmed council workers were out on Tuesday laying traps and poison in Stacey's home.
He believed the local authority should have responded more quickly as young children were affected but said resources were stretched.
He said, "She got a fright and I certainly would have got a fright if I saw a rat on my pillow.
"I think the issue is the dumping of rubbish at the side of the house. It used to cost £10 to get the council to uplift rubbish.
"It's now £25 so people might be dumping it because they can't afford to get it collected."
He also claimed reduced opening hours of dumps, such as the one at Wellwood, could be to blame for illegal dumping in the area.
Fife Council said the issue was resolved "promptly" after a call was first received by their contact centre at 12.30pm on Monday.
David Baker, lead officer (enforcement and commercial operations) said, "We take the issue of rats in someone's house very seriously so we have a policy of investigating rat issues within one working day - which we did in this case.
"An officer visited the premises within one working day of the call being received. The area has been baited and a further check will be made."
Have your say. Post a comment on this article.
Apr 20, 12:50
Apr 20, 13:29
Apr 21, 23:46
have I read this right you were putting you child to bed at 1AM if you were so concerned about rubbish being dumped why did you not drag it to pavement away from your house,get a cat or ferret rats hate them so will stay away
Recommend? Yes 20 No 6
Apr 22, 03:58
£25??? since when? last i heard it was £11...anyway..babies do not know what time of day it is so 1am is not unusual..and why should she move other folks rubbish? not many actually think..oh we will get rats now! The only folk liable for this is clearly FIFE COUNCIL!!! This young lady did nothin wrong as far as i can see.. i would not like to be in her shoes.
Recommend? Yes 9 No 15
Apr 24, 13:49