Interserve Construction Limited (ICL) has been fined £54,000 with £5,955 costs after admitting a single incident of discharging silt-laden water into a tributary of the River Rother in Burwash, East Sussex on 1 October 2014.
ICL was contracted to South East Water over an 18-month period at the Crowhurst Bridge Water Treatment Works to improve South East Water’s ability to manage water treatment. The Environment Agency discovered a brown discharge downstream of the Works after a member of the public reported the discoloured water to them.
Further investigations showed that the river was visibly but locally impacted on a temporary basis.
In mitigation it was stated that this was an isolated incident of 25 minutes duration, during an 18-month contract and that the company was of previous good character. There was no evidence that local wildlife was adversely affected.
David Willis, Environment Manager at the Environment Agency, said:
We take these incidents very seriously and do everything within our powers to safeguard the environment and people that may be affected.
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