Protect the community keep rodents at bay

PHOTO CUTLINE: A yard with waste materials and garbage, an example of a breeding ground and haven for rodents.

The Collective Prevention Services (CPS) from the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development & Labour, is advising households and business establishments to take preventive measures against rodents.

Vector and Rodent Assistant Controllers on the authority of the Police Ordinance 1940, Waste Ordinance 1993, and the Ordinance of 1921, with provisions to combat contagious diseases to instruct property, are informing home and business owners to clean-up their surroundings or face fines.

 

As part of the Minister of Public Health’s Hon. Cornelius de Weever’s ‘Get Checked,’ campaign, when yards are un-kept and full of debris it creates a haven for rodents and puts all members of the community at risk. So ‘check’ your surroundings and keep them clean!

Rodents are a fact of life but we can reduce their numbers by working together in protecting our homes making them rodent proof. The success of this and any program is dependent upon collaboration between government, citizens, and the community at large. Base on the fact rodents can spread infectious diseases it is recommended to keep the rodent population at a minimum and away from your homes. You can help keep rodents away from your home by depriving them of shelter and food by following a few simple guidelines.

Keep your entire premises clean. Seal garbage in tightly covered metal or heavy rubberized containers; don’t use containers like bags or boxes. All garbage should be bagged before it is placed in your garbage bins, a sealed container. Drain and wrap food waste before putting it into can. Keep garbage cans at least 18 inches off the ground and keep bin’s surroundings clean.

Store food items in rat-proof areas and/or into containers. Don’t store food in the garage or outside. Clean up any spilled food immediately. Don’t leave out uneaten pet food. Clean dog droppings up daily. Don’t put bird seed on the ground; rodents will get it first. If you use a bird feeder, the area under and around it must be kept free of seeds, hulls and should be free of all remaining food scraps, bird seeds etc.

Seal cracks or breaks in your foundation and repair holes in the floor, around pipes, screen doors, windows, vents and other openings into your home to prevent rodents from entering. Outside steps should be made out of concrete/masonry. Keep the space beneath wooden steps clean.

Keep all stored material (storage) at least 18" off the floor. Set furniture and appliances flush with the wall or far enough away so that the space between them and the wall can be easily cleaned. Keep all areas clean; keep the rodent outside, rodent proof your home.

For more information on eliminating rodents, call 542-2078/23003.

Help keep all yards and surroundings clean. If you see your neighbor’s property un-kept with garbage or other debris, call the Ministry or email surveillance@sintmaartengov.org.

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