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Sewage spill damages Basingstoke Canal

A water company have been fined over £17,000 after sewage flowed into a canal. Thames Water admitted liability for the spill at Woking Magistrates court after an environment agency worker noticed a cloudy discharge entering the water.

The Basingstoke Canal was polluted in the incident, with as many as 300 fish killed. Thames Water commented that a local sewer had become blocked with cooking fat and the sewage had unfortunately overflowed into the canal.

The remnants of the sewage spill were stopped from further polluting the canal by using booms across the canal to stop the spread of the spill, but a significant amount of damage was already done.

Ruth Clayden, the environment officer on the case stated:

“This was a distressing incident and it was upsetting to see so many fish either dead or gasping for life.

“The area is popular with anglers due to its urban location, and is fished regularly.

“Water companies have a statutory duty to maintain their sewers, which Thames Water had not done in this case.

“It sends a clear message to other companies that if you fail in your environmental responsibilities you may be prosecuted.”

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