NI Water owns up to pollution incident

Northern Ireland Water has held its hands up to a pollution incident that took place at a faulty wastewater treatment works in County Down last year.

The case went before court in Newry on Thursday where the company entered a guilty plea and received a conditional discharge.

The incident was linked to a fault that caused the storm tanks to discharge into a tributary of the Clanrye River.

A spokesperson for NI Water said: “The cause of this discharge was an unforeseen temporary fault that diverted the flows to the storm tanks, and once full to capacity, they overflowed to the nearby watercourse.

“No fish were killed in this incident and NI Water immediately acted to prevent the discharge and to clean up the watercourse.

“To reduce the likelihood of a similar incident happening again at this site, we have put additional measures in place. The alarm system has been expanded to ensure that any malfunction or overflow is detected and responded to.

“In addition, NI Water’s local staff have increased the frequency of their maintenance schedule at the treatment works.

“NI Water takes its responsibility to the environment extremely seriously and is working to reduce these occurrences. As our improvement and investment programme continues, we are confident that such incidents will become less common.”

Sam Bond

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