By John McDevitt

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The carcass of a dead raccoon, tangled in overhead power lines and rotting above a Juniata neighborhood, had nearby residents on edge.  At last it’s gone, and those residents are breathing easier — literally.

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Neighbors in and around the 3700 block of East Airdrie Street, near L and Erie, say the raccoon carcass was decomposing on the overhead power lines for a couple of weeks.

“You have flies flying all around it, it’s decaying, it’s disgusting, it smells horrible,” said Cynthia Harris, who contacted KYW Newsradio about the problem.  “My niece can’t even sit on the porch.”

Harris said both the city’s animal control agency and Peco were made aware of the problem but each said the other was responsible — as the dead raccoon continued to rot and stink.

KYW Newsradio  made a call to Peco.  Greg Smore, who works for the utility company, admits the responsibility was theirs but says because the raccoon did not cause a power outage and there was no immediate safety issue, removal was made a low priority.

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“We prioritize events such as wires down or trees on wires or poles down,” he said, “and, depending on crew availability, we respond to non-outage events in from two to five days.”

Harris, who initially contacted us and sent us a photo of the dead animal hanging from wires, says it was removed today at 2:30pm.

“The problem did get rectified, and I really thank you for making your call,” she said afterward.


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