Rodent spotted in Marciano Commons dining hall, students worry about hall hygiene – The Daily Free Press

A mouse at Marciano Commons. The mouse spotted in the Bay State dining hall on Jan. 17 has students questioning the hygiene standards and general cleanliness of the place where many enjoy their meals. COURTESY OF MADHRI YEHIYA

Several students spotted a mouse in the dining hall at Marciano Commons on January 17, raising concerns about hygiene standards and general cleanliness in the dining hall.

Reid Chave, a sophomore at the College of Arts and Sciences, said he saw a mouse eating crumbs next to a table in the dining room while he was eating with his girlfriend, adding that she had disappeared moments later.

“I think it went…into one of the radiator things. It was probably just trying to stay warm,” he said. “I’m not sure where he went, but it seemed like he was mostly looking for things left by diners in the lobby rather than walking around the kitchen.”

Video footage, taken on January 17, shows the mouse nibbling around a corner before running away.

Paul Riel, associate vice president of auxiliary services at Boston University, wrote in an email that the mouse was taken care of as soon as it was spotted.

“A staff member reported seeing a mouse directly to the pest control company who immediately responded and captured the mouse,” Riel said. “Additional steps were taken to identify open areas where the mouse could have entered the building.”

Food establishments must be free of insects, rodents or other pests in accordance with the Food Code of the United States Food and Drug Administration. Their presence should be controlled by routine inspections of food shipments and premises, implementing pest control measures if found, and eliminating “housing conditions”.

Riel wrote that “pest control is a priority” and that Auxiliary Services – which oversees BU’s student housing, dining and retail operations – keep “the highest level of vigilance” in food storage, preparation and service areas.

“We are working with a pest control supplier for regular inspections to prevent issues from occurring in the first place,” Riel wrote. “Because we take pest control seriously, any sightings or reports are given the utmost attention by our team.”

However, students and regulars at Marciano have expressed concern about hygiene levels in the dining hall after hearing and seeing video of the rodent.

“When you see a mouse in an area, it’s usually a crowd or a flock of mice, so I’m a bit worried about Marciano’s level of hygiene,” said CAS freshman Chanjin Yoon.

Boston ranks second in most rodent infestations in the United States, according to 2019 US Census Bureau data compiled by Apartment Guide.

Thomas Ross, a freshman at the Questrom School of Business, said he felt uncomfortable knowing there was a mouse in the dining room.

“It’s kind of unsanitary and disgusting,” he said. “I don’t really know how clean the kitchen is…but if there’s a mouse in the dining room, you can only assume there are others, otherwise that mouse would move around the kitchen. “

With respect to all circumstances, some students have asked the University to notify students of such incidents and work to ensure that the dining halls are a safe and clean environment.

“If this happens multiple times, I hope they will get a third party to fix this issue,” Yoon said. “I hope it’s a one-time thing, but they should post an announcement or show them that we care about this issue and are taking it seriously.”

Campus news editor Jesús Marrero Suárez contributed to this article.

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