For 15 years, Jordann Griffiths has put up with mould, leaks and mice in her council flat. Now, she also has a tropical ant infestation which has left her daughter in hospital, ITV London's Rags Martel reports
A 15-year-old girl living in a council flat infested with tropical ants is in hospital with septic shock after a bite became infected.
Rayanne Turay and her mother Jordann Griffiths live in a one-bedroom flat in Wandsworth which for years has been plagued by mould, water leaks and mice.
Their situation became even worse at the start of this year when they started noticing pharaoh ants, a tropical species that can carry a number of dangerous bacteria.
Wandsworth Council have spent three months to no avail trying to get rid of the ants, which have left both Rayanne and Ms Griffiths with painful bites on their bodies.
When ITV News spoke to Ms Griffiths yesterday, she'd spent the past six days by her daughter's bedside in Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, where she is being treated for a bite under her armpit.
"She was crying and all of that, she was uncomfortable, she couldn’t breathe, her temperature was 40C," Ms Griffiths said.
Any parent would be upset that their child has to suffer and go through all of that.”
In a letter to the council, seen by ITV London, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital said it is aware of an "ant infestation" at the home and is "concerned that Rayanne may get bitten again".
"Thank you for your consideration in reviewing Rayenne's housing situation," the doctor added.
Ms Griffiths says many others in her block of flats are having similar issues, adding: "I fear for everyone’s safety because it’s not right at all that we should have to go through this.”
Alternative accommodation has been offered by the council while the problem is being fixed, but Ms Griffiths has vowed never to go back to her flat, with no offer to permanently re-house her.
A council spokesperson said: “This is obviously a distressing set of circumstances and we sincerely hope this young person makes a swift and full recovery.
"We are aware of a pharaoh ant infestation at this resident’s property and using a pest control contractor we have treated the property three times over the summer and will continue to repeat the treatments until the problem has been dealt with.
"A number of necessary repairs to the property are also in hand and we will work with the resident to ensure these are completed as quickly as possible."
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