independent

Saturday 22 November 2014

Alarm system failure is 'unfathomable'

GREEN PARTY 'AGHAST' AT EXTENT OF PROBLEM

JOHN MANNING

Published 04/09/2012 | 18:16

Green Party member Zoe Nelson has said the small, A4-sized warning signs erected by the council were inadequate.

THE FINGAL Green Party says it is 'aghast' at the failures that led to a sewage spill at Balbriggan Beach last week and have sharply criticised Fingal County Council's handling of the incident.

The party said that the people of Balbriggan had been denied the use of their beloved beach because of an ' uncontrolled sewage spill that started earlier in the week and which had not been noticed by Fingal County Council for over 26 hours'. Local members of the Fingal Green Party helped to spread the word of the spill and beach closure by email and Twitter earlier in the week but were ' aghast' to learn last Wednesday evening of the extent of the catastrophe. Zoe Nelson, a Balbriggan-based member of the Fingal Greens, said: ' That the pumping station had failed we can understand but that the alarm system also failed and was not wired up to a UPS system is unfathomable.'

She added: ' What really concerns the local Green Party is that in addition to the immediate danger to human health for 26 hours the failed pumping station allowed raw sewage to spill into our sea onto our coast line and into the systems of local shell fish and wildlife.

'There is no way of telling what effect this will have on our many coastal species' The local party said the warnings put up on the beach about the incident by the council were inadequate. Ms Nelson explained: 'Fingal County Council have erected a single pathetically A4 size sign on the notice board, which is not even dated. 'On Thursday morning there were no Fingal employees evident and several beach users didn't even know there was a problem. ' The local Green Party have written to Fingal CoCo to ask how such an appalling situation will be prevented in the future and to ask what clean up measures will be taken. ' In the meantime be assured that the Fingal Green Party will keep a close eye on the situation.'

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