Residents of Council Estates in the Camp Redó area of Palma, which is also known as ‘Corea’, say a plague of rats has taken over the neighbourhood and that the hot weather is making it worse.
David Suárez, who’s a regular visitor to the area, claims the problem was exacerbated by the demolition of Block VIII in November last year, and that the situation is so bad it’s actually hard to believe.
“Every day residents kill between 30 and 40 rodents, either with shotguns, by putting poison on a piece of cheese, or with shovels and I have even seen someone trampling a rat to death barefoot out of despair,” he said. “It’s a miracle that something bad hasn’t happened, such as a child being bitten, because the rats are nearly as big as rabbits," adds Suarez who claims to have witnessed the rodents attacking pigeons.
In addition to running free in the streets, the rats also get into the buildings, which residents say is just part of everyday life in ‘Corea’.
José Luis Ariza, who’s a local resident, says the increase in the number of rats is not due to dirt in the neighbourhood.
“Emaya comes every day and the area is cleaned, the garbage is collected, it’s swept and abandoned furniture is removed, so we don’t know what's happened but there's a plague and Palma City Council is doing nothing,” he says. "Cort is aware of the situation we’re living in because neighbours tell people from Emaya and Social Services about it every day; the situation is horrendous, it’s like India, the rats pass us side by side and the truth is that they get very close to people, it's crazy and the situation has got a lot worse in the last few weeks,” he claims.
Locals also say the rats are eating cables and even devour the rubber from windshield wipers on parked cars.
Palma City Council claims that it treats each neighbourhood of the city three times a year regardless of whether the situation is urgent or not, but apparently there were no plans to treat Camp Redó in May or June this year. Two years ago, around the same time of year, Palma City Council reported the launch of a shock plan to end a rat infestation in the Corea neighbourhood.