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Pollution incident at tributary of Drumaness River

07 September 2011 15:53

NI Water has pleaded guilty to causing pollution at a tributary of the Drumaness River from a manhole beside the Drumaness Wastewater Treatment Works (WwTW) between July 2009 and January 2010.

A spokesperson for NI Water explained,

"The incident was linked to a capacity problem at the Drumaness WwTW inlet which was causing the network to surcharge and back up when it reached capacity. As such, the works was unable to cope with extra flows received during the period in question.

"While a number of remedial actions were undertaken by NI Water prior to this incident, there were no quick solutions to this problem. It required substantial capital funding and consultation with relevant bodies.

"NI Water has invested £1.2 million improving the works to alleviate this problem, which includes separating flows, new inlet screening, flow balancing tanks and a further treatment process at the Works. Additional sewage storage facilities are also being constructed at Spa. All approvals, including that for capital funding for the project, have been obtained.

"NI Water is confident that this improvement scheme will ensure that incidents like this will become a thing of the past.

"No fish kill was recorded in this incident and NI Water acted to stop the discharge to the river as soon as possible.

NI Water was fined £2000. Throughout the process, NI Water cooperated fully with NIEA.

NI Water views the protection of the environment as a major priority and invests significant resources and measures to safeguard it. Through major capital investment of over £490 million over the last three years in the sewerage network system and wastewater treatment works, NI Water's environmental record is improving year on year.

With ongoing investment, NI Water will continue to improve wastewater services for the people of Northern Ireland.

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