05/12/2005

Derry firm fined £4,000 for oil spill

A Londonderry firm has been fined £4,000 following an oil spill on their premises.

Ardmore Precast Concrete Ltd from Balybogie Road in the city was found to have several large oil tanks immediately beside a stream which flowed into the River Faughan.

The spill seriously polluted approximately seven miles of the Faughan, a noted game fishing river and led to DRD Water Service having to close down the main drinking water abstraction point for the Londonderry city area.

An officer from the Environment and Heritage Service (EHS) investigated a report of serious oil pollution in the River upstream of Drumahoe on 11 March 2004. The source was traced to the premises of Ardmore where several large oil tanks were found immediately beside the stream.

"There was clear evidence that there had been a significant spill of oil in the area of these tanks, and oil was still entering the stream," the subsequent report added.

An immediate cleanup of the oil in the River Faughan and at Ardmore's site was undertaken by EHS. However the volume of oil which had already escaped required a more extensive cleanup of the River Faughan to be undertaken.

DRD Water Service had to close down their drinking water abstraction point on the Faughan for several days after the spill until the oil cleared fully from the river.

(MB/SP)

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