Who Turned Out The Lights?



This story, that appeared in COLADAILY.COM from Columbia, South Carolina on Saturday, April 2, 2016, focuses on why 1,700 people were suddenly left without power on the previous Tuesday morning. What caused all those people to lose power? “Well, in a nutshell, it was a squirrel,” said SCE&G spokesperson Eric Boomhower, who added the squirrel caused an interruption to service when it shorted out the line. Boomhower said it is not uncommon for a squirrel to be the cause of outages like the one Tuesday morning. He also said the effects of the outage varied and that some were without power for about 15 minutes while others were in the dark until service was completely restored around 9:30 a.m.

Squirrels can cause more than power outages.

If a squirrel has moved into your home, you could end up with a power outage, and a whole host of other issues. But how would you know? Well, if you are hearing a lot of noise in your attic, this is a good indication that a furry friend has moved in. You may also find nests of twigs, leaves and torn up insulation in your attic area. Here are some things you should be concerned about if this is the case:

  • First of all, note that you should never try to feed a squirrel by hand. This is how the majority of squirrel bites happen, and these rodents can carry diseases.

  • Since they are rodents, squirrels have teeth that never stop growing, so they never stop chewing. They will chew on everything from plastic to antiques, and from boxes to wiring. Not only will chewing on wires possibly cause power outages (as in the article cited above) it can also cause a fire.

  • Squirrels leave urine and feces everywhere they go, which causes a terrible smell and also contributes to the possible spread of disease.

  • These rodents find bedding material by shredding roof or wallpaper, or vent ducts and insulation around pipes. They also destroy attic insulation. All of these things can be costly to repair.

So how can you keep squirrels out?

  • If you don't already have a furry friend living in your attic, you can try to seal your home. Carefully inspect your outside walls and roof area and seal and repair any gaps, cracks or holes.

  • Install vent covers or add heavy duty screens over attic vents.

  • Consider installing a chimney cap.

  • Remove food sources by keeping all garbage cans tightly sealed, feeding your pets inside, and picking up any food sources like fruit or nuts that have fallen from trees.

  • Trim all tree limbs and branches several feet away from your walls and roof.

If you already have a squirrel in your home, these exclusion tips will do you no good. Trapping a squirrel inside your home could cause more problems by forcing the animal into your living spaces. And it is never a good idea to try to remove a squirrel on your own. A cornered, threatened squirrel can cause major damage to your home and health. If you have a squirrel in your home, it is time to call a professional pest control company. Here at American Pest, we have the knowledge, experience and tools to safely and humanely remove squirrels from your home, and protect you from future invasion. Keep your home and family safe today, with help from American Pest.


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