‘Vandalism at NI Water site poses serious risk’

NI WATER has raised serious concerns about a recent break-in at its waste water treatment facility in Whitehouse.

The pumping station, which manages all the waste water flows for the Newtownabbey area, was broken into last month - the latest in a number of similar incidents at the site in recent months.

Parts of the surrounding fencing were damaged which left the site unsecured for a period of time, potentially exposing members of the public to serious injury.

NI Water representative, John Bell, who has been dealing with the break-in, explained: “While such actions may be considered harmless fun, NI Water would like to stress that there are serious risks, not only to those carrying out the break-ins, but also to the public and the environment.

“There appears to have been an attempted theft, with three rolls of copper wire found abandoned at the boundary fence. The thieves’ plan was interrupted when local residents became aware of the disturbance and notified PSNI who attended the scene before alerting NI Water staff. The site was secured temporarily overnight by NI Water. 

“We would appeal to those involved to think about their behaviour and stop immediately. There is also the added risk that young children could enter the station through the vandalised fence, exposing them to serious injury.

“The cost of repairing the damage is also a factor. This work creates a needless drain on resources that could be better used to improve services to the local community.”

To report an incident at any NI Water site, call the police on 0845 600 8000, contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or call Waterline on 08457 440088.