DENVER (CBS4) Travelers have a warning for drivers who park their cars near Denver International Airport (DIA). Rabbits are chewing the wires under many cars costing owners a lot of money. The rabbits get in and chew the brake lines, the clutch lines and other wiring. Local car repair shops estimates they can do thousands of dollars in damage.
"When I had the trouble with the oil light coming on, the dealer told me the wires that controlled the air conditioning were chewed," said Ken Blum, one car owner who knows all about the not so funny bunny business at DIA.
Blum has had to have repairs done on his car twice due to rabbit damage and he estimates the cost at approximately $700.
"I saw no signs…nothing to tell me, 'Hey, beware'," Blum told CBS4. "My insurance didn't cover it, the manufacturer didn't cover it."
This isn't a new problem at the airport. CBS4 first started covering hungry hares in 1999. They were munching on the wires of de-icing equipment. Now it seems they've moved to the outlying parking lots.
CBS4 contacted airport officials about the problem. They said that only a small percentage of the people who park out there ever complain of rabbit caused car problems. They also told CBS4 that United States Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services agents patrol the parking lots and remove rabbits when they see them.
Hungry hares are not just a problem at DIA, other private parking lots are having trouble too. Lot owners tell CBS4 that they're trying to deter the rabbits with extra fencing and coyote urine.
DIA said they have only received a handful of claims concerning rabbits damaging cars in recent years. Since 2009 there have been nine official claims from passengers reporting damage to their cars from rabbits.
DIA said more than 11,720 cars are parked on the property each day.
--Written for the Web by CBS4 Special Projects Producer Libby Smith
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