Published Date Written by Staff ReportRosanne Graef, president of the West End Neighborhood Association, reported an increase in rats in the neighborhood, in the same week that rats apparently spurred a shutdown of waterfront businesses.
On Portland's waterfront, the Portland Press Herald reported that three businesses — Harbour's Edge, the Comedy Connection, and the Porthole Restaurant — were temporarily closed down late this week after the city's restaurant inspector found evidence of a "serious rat infestation."
Graef issued an email notice on Thursday stating, "At last night's WENA meeting there were reports of increasing numbers of rats in the neighborhood. If you have seen rats — alive or dead — or evidence of rat activity in the West End, please let us know. This info will be forwarded to Public Works and the Health Dept. so the problem can be addressed. We need to know where, when and what you saw. Thanks for your assistance on this."
Efforts to reach city officials about either incident were unsuccessful.
Stephen Sears, state epidemiologist with the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said he had not heard any complaints about rats in Portland, although he cautioned those types of reports typically would only reach the state agency if a disease concern emerged.