Romford couple horrified to discover rat babies nesting in their car engine

PUBLISHED: 17:00 06 November 2018

Siobhan Wheele from Romford was horrified to discover 10 rat babies under the hood of her car. Picture: Siobhan Wheele

Siobhan Wheele from Romford was horrified to discover 10 rat babies under the hood of her car. Picture: Siobhan Wheele


A pregnant woman from Romford and her partner were shocked to discover rat babies nesting in their car following an infestation of the rodents in their building.

Siobhan Wheele, 28, has been waiting for more than a month for Estuary housing association to deal with a rat infestation at Alice Court, Hanover Place in Victoria Road.

She told the Recorder: “We were driving to Asda on Friday evening [November 2] when we noticed a horrible smell coming from the car. We popped the bonnet and found 10 or so baby rats.

“I contacted Estuary and was told they don’t have an emergency pest control department and I would have to wait until Monday to get the rat babies removed from the car.

“I then called pest control but due to it being 7.20pm on a Friday it would cost £200 to get them out.

“This meant that my partner had to roll up his sleeves and clear the rats out himself.

“We then found more babies in the bonnet on Saturday morning and then again on Sunday afternoon.”

Siobhan is eight months pregnant and has had to park her car at her mother-in-law’s address to try and avoid the rats entering her car.

Siobhan Wheele discovered ten rat babies in her car in Romford on Friday, November 2. Picture: Siobhan WheeleSiobhan Wheele discovered ten rat babies in her car in Romford on Friday, November 2. Picture: Siobhan Wheele

“Having them in our car is dangerous. I’m getting to the point where I have to go to the hospital more and more often,” she said.

“We’re petrified that I’ll go into labour, we’ll get into the car and it will blow up because of the rats.”

Siobhan and her partner, Chris Errity, have the parking space which sits in front of their building’s bin sheds where the rats are coming from.

They first realised that the rats had started entering their car on September 8, after their check engine light came on only two weeks after passing the MOT.

Siobhan said: “[The mechanic] found a dead rat in the car. It had bitten through the wires and electrocuted itself.

“If it hadn’t bitten through the wires we wouldn’t have known that there was a hefty nest inside.”

The soon-to-be-mum believes that because the weather is getting colder, the rats are nesting in their vehicle.

A spokeswoman from Estuary said: “We were made aware of a problem with rats in the bin area at Alice Court, on September 13. This was immediately reported to our repairs contractor who arranged for a pest control company to attend.

“They attended and laid bait stations, there has also been regular treatment of the area over the last few weeks, including the baiting of rat holes and the refilling of bait stations.

“Our pest control contractor is satisfied that they now have the problem under control but will be visiting again to assess the situation and will refill the bait stations if necessary.

“Our staff have also attended regularly to clean the communal areas including the bin store, and ordered an additional refuse bin. We will be contacting the residents of Alice Court to keep them updated in respect of the treatment of the infestation.”

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