A Pennington Gap homeowner noticed a few weeks ago that she had a few friends that she did not invite for dinner and they were over staying their welcome -- her entire property had become infested with cockroaches.
The town officials told us since it is on privately-owned property that there is only so much that they are allowed to do. Officials also say the bug problem is a lot better now than it was.
"I have them in my back yard, I have them in my garage. I have them in my yard and on my back porch," said Pennington Gap homeowner Sandra Woliver.
Woliver is dealing with roaches and not just one or two, but thousands. We went to Woliver's home and discovered they weren't nesting at her home, but at one behind hers.
We learned the home behind Woliver's is a rental and was abandoned two weeks ago.
Woliver says she has done all she can do by spraying her own yard, but it does not seem to work. "I can't get social services, I can't get the health department. I can't get the building inspector. I can't get anybody to help us," she said.
After speaking with town manager Phil Hensley, we found out he has a different story. “As soon as they contacted us, we were there. The property owner said we had been very cooperative," Hensley told us.
Woliver says she isn't the only one affected. Her neighbor, Chasity Haynes, has two small children who live in her home. Haynes also says the bugs have been a huge problem. “They’re just coming in on them; getting into their beds where they sleep," she said.
Haynes' niece’s eye is swollen from infection and Haynes tells us it is an infection they believe is from the cockroaches.
Haynes says she wants something done about it for the well-being of her family. "We're trying tonight to try and get them to condemn the place or do something with it so the roaches aren't coming to everyone in the neighborhood’s home," she said.
The town has brought in back-up from extended services with Virginia Tech.
We learned that the bugs are German cockroaches and are resistant to most chemicals.
Town manager Phil Hensley also says Pennington Gap is getting involved to help fix the problem because it is a health hazard to everyone in the area.