City Health Dept. Hopes Dry Ice Can Eliminate Its Rodent Problem

The city is looking to put its rat problem on ice by testing some new techniques.

The Health Department is using dry ice to combat the rodent issue.

Workers are pumping dry ice into a burrow where rats live and covering the top with dirt. The dry ice takes the oxygen out of the space.

Officials say a six-month pilot program at Columbus Park in Chinatown has reduced the number of active rat burrows from 250 to one single hole.

"A burrow system may be two to three burrows. And if you close all those areas where they enter, where they escape, their secondary holes, in a very short amount of time, they just suffocate in the burrows, and that's it. You eliminate them," said Rick Simeone, director of pest control services for the New York City Department of Health.

Officials say blasting rat burrows with dry ice won't harm other wildlife or pets.

Plans are underway to expand the dry ice program to other chronically infested areas of the city.

Officials also say 25 solar trash bins in Columbus Park is also helping in the fight against rats since they're rodent-proof.

Charter Spectrum customers get full access
to all our video, including our live stream.
 

Tune to Spectrum News NY1 on TV, online, on our app, or on Local On Demand Channel 1020 for:

Road to City Hall, Mon.-Fri. at 7pm and 10pm
The Call, Mon.-Fri. at 9pm and 3am
In Focus with Cheryl Wills, Sun. at 10:30am & 3:30pm
The New York Times Close Up, Sat. at 2pm and 10pm
• On Stage, Sat.-Sun. 9:30am & 7:30pm + Tues. 12:30am
• Talking Pictures, Sat. & Sun. 12:30am + Sat. 12:30pm
Sports on 1, nightly at 11:35pm and 4am

TOP-RANKED STORIES

VOTE FOR YOUR TOP STORY FOR "THE CALL" SHOW