When 25 sludge filled containers were discovered in the trailer on Friday evening, the PSNI said the incident was not a matter for them. The containers were filled with laundered waste which included fuller’s earth and cat litter which are used to remove dye from marked diesel.
Councillor Patrick Clarke stated: “I welcome the removal of the curtain side lorry unit which was abandoned along the Dublin road outside Castlewellan last Friday. The stolen lorry unit was full of 25 containers which were filled with laundered waste that included fuller’s earth and cat litter which are used to remove dye from marked diesel.
“There was a lot of local concern that somebody would have deliberately left fuel waste on the main Dublin Road outside Castlewellan, which is a main route to Kilcoo and Newry.
“The consignment of toxic fuel waste was leaking and Northern Ireland Environment Agency officials had to deploy ‘bunds’ to soak up the liquid over the weekend. I am pleased that Down District Council had the trailer removed as soon as possible to remove any potential threat to the environment and road users.
“The cost of removing the waste has been estimated at £10,000, but it’s not yet clear who will be footing the bill. Down District Council believes the bill should be picked up by the Environment Agency. However, there needs to be an agreement about who pays for the cost for removing the waste as I am of the clear opinion that it should be the Environment Agency and not Down District Council that foots the bill which ultimately would fall on the local ratepayer.”