Are rats taking over the Upper East Side?

April 26, 2010 3:32:34 PM PDT
Rats are out of control and out to find new homes on Manhattan's Upper East Side. People living in the East 90s say rats have been displaced by construction for the Second Avenue subway and are becoming more and more visible on the streets.

Residents, according to reports, have been complaining about the increase of rats they are seeing in the area. Any many believe the underground work that has been going on for the last few years is to blame.

"It looks like the street's moving," longtime resident Walter Johnson told the Wall Street Journal. "It's just wild. You can't imagine how infested this place became."

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Some of the restaurants and delis in the area say they have taken extreme measures to stop the rats from actually coming inside the stores.

There is some debate on whether the subway is to blame, or if the rat population has just been increasing over time. Complaints sparked an MTA investigation, but the contractor concluded the increase was due to an abandoned building on Second Avenue.

The MTA told Eyewitness News that an expert looked at the problem and concluded that it is "not the result of construction work." but that it is a "pre-existing condition" related to residential and commercial refuse.

For it's part the agency has put in baits and traps within the construction zone-like this tamper resistant bait station.