'These rats aren't afraid of people... they will jump out on top of you' - Dublin estate overrun with rodents
"DON'T open that bin, the rat will jump out on top of you - he'll come over the top flying."
This is the reality for residents at a rat-infested private estate in south Dublin.
Located around a communal bin shed at the back of Grange View Place, Clondalkin, rats are scurrying along walls, inside rubbish bins, on paths, even over car bonnets - and parents with young kids cannot cope.
Within a 30-minute period yesterday afternoon, our team saw around 50 of the vermin, some quite large - and that's just the beginning according to fearful locals, who say that the evening is when it gets entirely out of hand.
The estate's management company has made repeated efforts to solve the problem.
Rat poison boxes have been laid down in a number of different places surrounding the infested area.
It is understood the shed is to be cleared out this evening.
But Marta Boitor says her son Manuel (12) cannot leave the house because it's too dangerous. She said the rats are fearless.
"It's too dangerous for kids. There are lots of children in this estate and they're playing here a lot," Ms Boitor said.
"What's more scary is that the rats are not scared of people. You're sitting in the house and you see them outside, it's horrible.
"My son used to bring the black bins to the shed, but he won't anymore because he's scared. You open the lid (of the bin) and they jump," she added.
The infestation goes a lot further than in and around the bins, according to Ms Boitor.
"You can't leave any door or windows open for fresh air because you're just scared that they will get into the house," she said.
"Around 7pm or 8pm they're roaming along the paths. They're not scared of people, they're walking through your legs," Ms Boitor said.
"They're also damaging the cars, they're sleeping in the cars. They have a nest in one and are eating the pipe that's going to the diesel.
"They've tried to fix the problem so many times - the bin shed needs to go. It's not nice to see the bins outside houses, but it's better," she added.
Local Councillor Mark Ward said it is like nothing he has ever seen before.
Mr Ward said he has contacted all relevant parties in order to get the issue resolved.
"Where the rats are coming from is probably the canal," he said. "We need to work together on it because that's no way for people to be living."
The estate's management company could not be reached by the Herald before going to print.
However, it is understood they are making efforts to resolve the issue.