Water firm fined £10k after trying to fix sewage leak with BIN BAGS

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A water company has been fined £10,000 for polluting a stream after bungling staff tried to fix a broken sewage pipe – with BIN BAGS.

Workers used refuse sacks and cable ties in an attempt to plug a leak at a South West Water plant in Hollocombe, Devon.

But the “woefully inadequate” repairs failed, allowing sewage to seep into a nearby stream which became choked with algae and fungal growth.

South West Water pleaded guilty to two offences at Barnstaple Magistrates Court and was ordered to pay a #10,000 fine with #2,100 costs.

Environment Agency inspector Sue Smillie said afterwards: “The poor level of maintenance at this site suggests South West Water sets a very low priority on some of its small rural sewage works.

“The residents of Hollocombe pay their water rates and expect their sewage to be properly treated.”

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