Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 9°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Suffolk: Rats eat through car as weather sends vermin in search of warmer homes

13:49 22 January 2013

Jill Delaney is pictured with her car which had the electrics and bits of the interior chewed by rats.

Jill Delaney is pictured with her car which had the electrics and bits of the interior chewed by rats.


PEST control bosses have seen the number of rodent call outs go up by 50% in Suffolk as wet and cold weather drives vermin in doors.


One woman was left with almost £1,000 of damage after rats chewed away parts of her car while other residents have reported rodents clambering out of their toilets.

Martin Buckle, managing director of The Suffolk Pest Control Company, said their phones started to ring as soon as the weather turned.

“There has been a huge number of rats and mice this year. The main reason they are going into houses and cars is probably due to the water table going up and down with floods, they are looking for higher, drier ground, moving from sewers and ditches into people’s houses. The cold could be another factor.

“We have seen a lot of calls, especially when the weather started to turn. We probably have seen about a 50% increase on last year.”

Mr Buckle said he often sees rats going into cars, usually if they have been left for some time in garages or gardens.

He added: “We have also seen them coming out of toilets this year, especially in places that are on Victorian sewerage. Recently I had a case where a chap was in the bathroom on the second floor of his house. He lifted up the toilet seat and saw a rat. “He was lucky he had left the lid closed or it would have been in his house. It had climbed up the downpipe, probably due to the water levels rising.”

Jill Delaney, 74, who lives in a rural location Kentford, returned from a Christmas break to find that rats had swarmed inside her Ford Fusion.

She said: “I’ve got to keep my car in the garden because I’m not allowed to leave it on the drive because I live on a stable yard. I went away at Christmas and came back and rats had eaten my car – absolutely wrecked it. I’ve never seen anything like it –it was just devastated.”

Mrs Delaney, who said the repair bill came in at £800 has now sent the car off to have wire wool inserted into its cavities to stop the rats striking again.

She added: “I know where the nest is and where they go in my garden because I can see their footprints in the snow.”



  • This problem in winter is not new, which is why there are plenty of gadgets on the market to combat this. A lot cheaper than a repair bill after the event.

    Report this comment

    Bernie Horton

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

  • "weather sends vermin in search of warmer homes". So are Tories moving to Spain or Italy?

    Report this comment

    Origami Penguin

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Highpoint Prison in Stradishall, Suffolk.

A BB gun and ammunition were found by an inmate at a prison in Suffolk.

Emergency services at the scene of the crash in Needham Market

Emergency services were called to a collision in High Street, Needham Market this afternoon.

East Anglian Air Ambulance

A chimney sweeper remains in a critical condition with spinal injuries after falling from a roof in Combs yesterday.

Will  Ian Cumming be crowned Bake Off Champion 2015 tonight?

Tonight marks the grand final of the Great British Bake Off and viewers will watch as Ian Cumming, Nadiya Hussain and Tamal Ray battle it out for the Bake Off crown.

Hattie Lewis holding 'Mr Ted' 
He went missing on Wednesday, September 30

A desperate mum is calling on the residents of Sudbury to help her find a missing teddy bear belonging to her four-year-old daughter.

Call for tightening of UK border controls

Suffolk’s “horrified” Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) has demanded EU border control reforms after a convicted paedophile banned from the UK was jailed again for returning to work with teenagers.

Stock image.

Fifteen tonnes of concrete blocks fell out of a lorry after it crashed in a ditch in Suffolk.

Newborn baby

Expectant fathers can now be on hand to comfort their partners during early labour in a move to reduce stress and anxiety for mums-to-be.

solar panels

Proposals to install solar panels on 2,000 council homes across Ipswich have been abandoned after the Government announced it was changing the tariffs paid for renewable energy.

BBC reporter Kim Riley and his cameraman Shaun Whitmore experienced problems with their car's remote locking on a visit to Lowestoft. Photo: Shaun Whitmore.

An interfering mobile phone mast could be the reason why Lowestoft residents are facing a mysterious problem with locking their cars remotely, a motoring organisation has said.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages