South Holland gets invite to join Anglian Water's Pollution Watch movement
Anglian Water is inviting anglers, dog walkers, birdwatchers and nature lovers in South Holland to be part of its Pollution Watch campaign.
The aim is to bring down the number of pollution incidents across the area covered by the water provider.
It wants community groups and the wider public to report any unusual or suspicious activity they see around pumping stations, drains and sewerage systems that Anglian Water operates.
Dr Lucinda Gilfoyle, head of environmental quality for Anglian Water, said: "River pollution most commonly occurs when our pipes become blocked with unflushable items, such as fats, wipes, cotton buds or sanitary items – all things that shouldn’t be in the sewer in first place.
“Blockages mean sewage can’t make its way through the network as normal so used water may escape and cause flooding or pollution.
"While we monitor our network closely and often carry out preventative cleaning and maintenance to try and prevent these blockages, we can’t always stop them happening.
"The most obvious sign of pollution in a stream or river is the presence of sewage solids or toilet paper in the water.
"It can often look a milky colour, or contain soap suds.
"It doesn’t always smell of sewage, but that can happen too.”
Anglian Water company has a programme of work to prevent spills, including regular checking of pumps and pipes, ongoing repairs and maintenance, encouraging people to not flush these things in the first place and removing any illegal connections that have been made to the sewer network when they are found.
However, the company is calling for extra eyes and ears to help monitor local waterways.
Dr Gilfoyle said: "Where we are responsible, we aim to take immediate action, carry out a full clean-up and investigate to prevent events reoccurring.
"Where we are not responsible, we aim to help get to the bottom of the problem so appropriate action can be taken too."
Members of the public can help the water company by reporting any concerns to Anglian Water by calling 0345 714 5145.