Co Antrim businessman fined for contravening the conditions of a discharge consent

Date published: 23 May 2019

Today at Ballymena Magistrates' Court, James Montgomery Fleck (51) pleaded guilty and was fined a total of £3,000 plus £15 Offenders Levy for breaching the terms of a discharge consent issued by the Department.

On 7 March 2016, a Water Quality Inspector, acting on behalf of the Northern Ireland Environment Agency, responded to a report of water pollution where sewage was discharging into the Ballygally River adjacent to a housing development. The Inspector observed sewage on the concrete outfall and a discharge was observed flowing from the emergency overflow pipe from the private sewage pumping station that serves the properties to the waterway which then discharges to the bathing water at Ballygally Beach.

Further reports of pollution were received on five dates between 7 March 2016 and 22 August 2017.

On 27 January 2017 a positive dye test from one of the houses confirmed the dye was discharging from the emergency overflow pipe and was observed in the Ballygally Burn.

Mr Fleck holds a consent to discharge under the Water Order, this consent permits discharges for emergency overflow from the pumping station to the waterway in certain conditions. This ongoing situation contravened the conditions of the consent to discharge issued by the Department.    

Anyone wishing to report a pollution incident can call the 24 hour Water Pollution Hotline on: 0800 80 70 60.

Notes to editors: 

  1. James Montgomery Fleck (Culcrum Road, Cloughmills, Ballymena) was fined £3,000 (£500 for each of six offences) and charged under Article 7(6) of the Water (Northern Ireland) Order 1999 with the offence of breaching the conditions of a discharge consent issued by the Department.
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