Warning: There are now car-eating rats on the Upper West Side

Having engine trouble? Our advice is not to look under the hood.

Photograph: Shutterstock

It’s probably fair to say that NYC is already one of the toughest cities on earth in which to own a car. Whether you’re dealing with draconian parking laws, stoned taxi drivers or the eight-foot snow drift that’s buried your car since January, having a car can often seem more hassle than it’s worth. For residents of the Upper West Side, that’s even more true than usual, thanks to the endless, brutal winter that’s caused rats to start making their nests inside engines.

Yes, that’s right: Your car won’t start because there are large rodents under the hood. This shouldn’t really come as a surprise—this is, after all, a city that has rats on 13 percent of its subway platforms—but it’s still a horrifying turn of events for unsuspecting drivers. The damage they do to the engine itself with their habitual chewing is a financial burden, of course, but possibly worse is the psychological trauma caused by finding a nest made of what the mechanic interviewed by the Post described as garbage and chicken bones.

The good news is that this awful winter is finally limping to a damp and dreary close, which hopefully means the rats can get back in the sewers where they belong (you can keep an eye out for rat hot spots here). And then, of course, all we have to worry about is squirrels chewing through our cable wires. Nature, why do you hate us?

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Editor: Marley Lynch (@marleyasinbob)


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