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Burren Sewage Pumping Station Pollution Incident

14 November 2011 16:24

NI Water can confirm it was fined £1,250 today for a pollution incident at Burren Sewage Pumping Station on 14 May 2010.

A spokesperson said:

“The incident at Burren Sewage Pumping Station occurred when the pumps at the station became air locked. NI Water was alerted by an alarm system at 20:00 hrs and by 21:00hrs staff had cleared the airlock and the pumps were operational again.

“NI Water treats any issue of pollution extremely seriously and has taken steps to minimise the potential for a similar incident at Burren Sewage Pumping Station to occur. For example, an internal investigation identified the need for the alarm to alert much earlier than it had been set to do so. The alarm has been set so NI Water staff now have an earlier warning to a potential problem. This incident was classified as low environmental impact as no fish were killed.

“NI Water is tackling serious long term underinvestment in this and other wastewater infrastructure across Northern Ireland. A capital upgrade programme is presently completing on the Newcastle sewerage system, with a spend of approximately £5million. This work includes rationalisation of the overflows within the system, structural upgrades and the provision of storm attenuation in Castle Park. In addition, it is anticipated that a start will be made this year to the upgrade of Newcastle Wastewater treatment works. When this investment programme is complete, such incidents will become less common.

“NI Water cooperated fully with the Northern Ireland Environment Agency throughout this process.

“NI Water asks for the assistance of the public in keeping the sewerage assets operating correctly by not disposing of inappropriate items down the drains. The message is simple, ‘Bag it and Bin it’.”

The protection of the environment is a major priority for NI Water and we take our role in safeguarding it extremely seriously. NI Water is also the only public body in Northern Ireland to hold International ISO 14001 status, an international standardisation award based on a company’s environmental management system.

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