A MUM-of-two says her life has been a “living hell” since rats began crawling around her Johnstone council flat almost two months ago.

Tammy McGarrell, 23, says she has been “sofa-surfing” with family and friends for about seven weeks after the vermin began getting into her kitchen and chewing through electrical wires and pipes at her flat in MacDowall Street.

Ms McGarrell said Renfrewshire Council staff have been round to try and fix the issue, but the rats keep returning and she is now facing the prospect of spending Christmas in the infested flat.

The council has said officers have been treating the property with rodenticide and they will continue to do so until the issue is resolved.

Ms McGarrell said: “I have felt so depressed these past few weeks and I’m now at the point where I can’t keep staying with people. I need to move back in. It’s been a living hell and I’m worried for my kids.

“My youngest son has his birthday on Boxing Day and my oldest had to celebrate his sixth birthday while we were sofa-surfing.

“The council has tried to sort it but it’s not working and now they’re saying they won’t come back. For ages they said I wasn’t an emergency and I couldn’t have rats because I was too high up but I only live in the middle of the block.”

Councillor Andy Doig, who represents the area, has been helping Ms McGarrell for a number of weeks.

He said: “I think the council needs to take this very seriously and I think Ms McGarrell needs to be decanted to another safer property until the rats are exterminated.

“She has experienced flooding because the rats have been munching at the pipes and it’s also been affecting another woman downstairs.”

A council spokesperson said: “We have been working with the resident to resolve this matter and officers have been treating the issue with an approved rodenticide. Our officers will continue to visit the property to ensure the problem is eradicated and will undertake repairs to remove any access points for the rodents.”