Major clear-up after foul sewer pipe bursts

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The sewer was found to be blocked by a number of large boulders – thought to be rubble from a building site – and the blockage caused the sewer to overflow.

There was an escape of sewage into a nearby stream but there was no risk of a pollution incident as the stream does not run into the fresh water collection system.Engineers from the Public Services department are in charge of the clean-up operation and have been at the site in Rue du Saut Falluet since Sunday.

The road itself is closed and diversions are posted, although those living nearby can access their premises.The manager of engineering services at Public Services, Dick Richomme, said that this was the first time in 18 months that a mains trunk foul sewer had burst and he described the incident as ‘most unusual’.

‘It is a 12-inch mains foul sewer pipe and we have had to fracture it to gain access to the builders’ rubble.

We are in the process of replacing about six metres of piping,’ he said.He said that tankers had been pumping sewage from overloaded manholes and pumping stations since the weekend.

They have been taking it to the Bellozanne treatment plant for disposal.

Mr Richomme added that he did not believe there would be much chance of tracing where the builders’ rubble came from.Geoffrey Zimmer of nearby Ferme du Saut Falluet reported the overflow on Sunday.

‘It overflowed for about a week in early December and the tankers came to pump it out.

We thought that it was sorted but on Saturday and Sunday it overflowed again.

There were some very unpleasant whiffs and the area around the pumping station really is a horrendous mess,’ he said.The mains trunk sewer carries waste from the north west of the Island to the sea at Beaumont and runs under the Airport runway toward the Mermaid.

From there it goes underground to Pont Marquet and along the Railway Walk to St Aubin, from where it runs to First Tower.

From there, it is pumped to the Bellozanne plant for treatment.

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