Six Mile pollution problem caused by blocked sewer

Contaminated water flowing into the Six Mile Water. Picture courtesy of Ballynure Angling Club. INNT 12-800CON
Contaminated water flowing into the Six Mile Water. Picture courtesy of Ballynure Angling Club. INNT 12-800CON

NI Water has confimred that the cause of raw sewage flowing into the Six Mile Water in Ballyclare last week was a blocked sewer in the Rathmena area of the town.

The issue, which was reported to the Northern Ireland Environment Agency by local anglers last Monday, was finally cleared by NI Water staff on Thursday, March 17.

A spokesperson from NI Water said: “On 16 March, an NI Water crew found a blocked sewer at Rathmena in Ballyclare. The blockage was within a duel manhole which caused it to spill into the storm channel. NI Water staff were monitoring the area on Thursday, March 17 and a second blockage was discovered. This has been cleared, however, further monitoring will be done over the coming days to ensure that the incident is now fully resolved.

“NI Water would take this opportunity to remind customers to dispose of inappropriate items in the bin, rather than in the sewers. Flushing items like household wipes, baby wipes, sanitary towels etc, are a very common cause of sewer blockages across Northern Ireland, and NI Water is literally fighting a daily battle to keep the sewers clear, at a cost of £2.5 million per year. The result of flushing these items are blockages in our sewers which in turn can lead to out of sewer flooding and potential pollution of our rivers.

“Further information on NI Water’s ‘Dirty Dozen’ campaign - the 12 most common inappropriate items flushed into the sewerage system - can be found at www.niwater.com”