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Prepping & Survival

“Rat Urine” Disease Spreading In New York City

Health officials in New York City are seeing a jump in cases of a rare disease linked to rat urine. This news comes just one year after the rulers anointed a czar for its “war on rats.”

It doesn’t seem to be going well, like every war the U.S. has backed lately. Harry Nespoli, president of the Uniformed Sanitationmen’s Association, which represents Department of Sanitation workers, told USA Today: “The streets are looking cleaner, but the rats are still around…Look, they were here before us.”

“Experts” claim that cases of leptospirosis, the illness caused by exposure to rats’ urine, have been increasing as sanitation workers are exposed to the bacteria.

In April 2023, Mayor Eric Adams appointed the city’s first “rat czar,” whose job is to reduce the pest population and promote cleaner streets and new approaches to trash collection. The City Council also considered ordinances that could decrease the rat population using a birth control program. That’s right, people think they can control rats with birth control. No wonder New York City is seeing an increase in leptospirosis.

In 2024, six sanitation workers got the disease, according to Nespoli. Five of the 24 cases the year prior occurred among sanitation workers, he added.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in humans, leptospirosis can cause a wide range of symptoms, some of which may be mistaken for other diseases. Some infected persons, however, may have no symptoms at all. Without treatment, Leptospirosis can lead to kidney damage, meningitis (inflammation of the membrane around the brain and spinal cord), liver failure, respiratory distress, and even death.

Leptospirosis can cause a wide range of symptoms, including:

  • High fever
  • Headache
  • Chills
  • Muscle aches
  • Vomiting
  • Jaundice (yellow skin and eyes)
  • Red eyes
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Rash

But these symptoms are often disregarded as other diseases or illnesses too. No sanitation workers have yet to die of the disease, Nespoli stated. But the prospect of such a scenario prompted a state bill backed by the union that would provide benefits to employees and their families if they become disabled or die from the disease.


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