YONKERS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — They only come out at night, but the rats who have taken up residence in the ruins of National Wholesale Liquidators have plans for their new neighborhood.
More than a year ago, a parking deck collapsed and dropped a forklift through the ceiling of National Wholesale Liquidators, reports CBS2’s Tony Aiello.
Web Extra: Watch Our Coverage From The Day Of The Collapse
The building near the Mall at Cross Country was left unusable, unstable and in danger of collapse, so it was abandoned – but lots of food was left inside.
Humans in the neighborhood behind the store say rats have been feasting on that food and are now looking for places to live, nest and breed in the surrounding area. They’re even burrowing and breeding on Bruce Quinto’s property.
“I had to put steel into all the holes,” he said.
The mesh Quinto placed inside drainage pipes to block the rodents’ access can be seen by the naked eye.
Other neighbors have begun taking extreme steps, putting out industrial rat traps and filing drainage pipes and holes with metal wire mesh to stop the invasive vermin.
Mayor Mike Spano says he’s sorry residents have suffered consequences. The city is pressing the building’s owners to do more rat control, and is promising to fast track demolition permits now that the landlord and insurance carrier have settled a dispute.
“The entire structure must be taken down,” Spano said. “They have weeks to do it, and if they don’t then the City of Yonkers will take that building down and bill the owner of that property.”
Meanwhile, every day brings a rat-related surprise to neighbors who can’t get rid of the rodents soon enough.
CBS2 reported Yonkers ticketed the building owner three times since the collapse; once for safety violations and twice for failing to control rodents.