Sewage spills into Ipswich river

A WATER company was forced into a quick clean-up operation after sewage was sent spewing into an Ipswich river.Workers based near to the River Gipping reported seeing the foul-smelling liquid sewage spilling into the river near the Yarmouth Road bridge.

A WATER company was forced into a quick clean-up operation after sewage was sent spewing into an Ipswich river.

Workers based near to the River Gipping reported seeing the foul-smelling liquid sewage spilling into the river near the Yarmouth Road bridge.

The sewage entered the river through an overflow pipe after a blockage in nearby pipes.

The problem was first reported to Anglian Water at about 12.30pm yesterday after being spotted during the morning. By 3.50pm workers from the company had arrived to clear the system, but only after a large amount of sewage had entered the river.

The same section of river was blighted with effluent from the same pipe in April last year and one local worker said the same problem happened last month.

Andy Moore, a parts manager at Donald's Mazda in West End Road spotted the problem and said: “It was pouring out right into the river. There were all sorts of things floating in there and it smelled.

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“Normally you can see the bottom of the river and see the fish but it's dark at the moment.

“If we did it we'd get fined.”

Anglian Water thanked the members of the public who reported the problem, but said it wasn't clear what had caused it.

Dan Baker, a spokesman for the company, said: “There was a blockage. We jetted it out and the blockage was cleared.

“What escaped into the river was liquid, there were no solids in it.

“There are many reasons why a drain could block. There was some roofing felt that went through into the water so that could have been in the drain.”

The overflow pipe is there to prevent the sewage system collapsing when a drain in the area blocks by preventing a backlog.

After last year's problem the company said it suspected that a build-up of grease and fats in the drains could have been to blame.

Mr Baker said the company would look into the frequency of the problem and if it appeared to be occurring regularly it would include the area in a regular maintenance programme to ensure the drains were cleared.

Anyone witnessing problems with blocked drains should call Anglian Water on 08457 145145.

Did you see the sewage spilling into the river? What do you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.