Fish kill failure and Wilson’s comments are disgraceful

Alliance Sustainability Spokesperson Cllr Alan Lawther has labelled both the failure to detect the polluter who caused a major fish kill and Sammy Wilson’s comments on the issue a total disgrace. The fish kill happened on the Sixmilewater River in County Antrim in July.

Cllr Alan Lawther said: “There was an announcement that no prosecution could be made because the Rivers agency could not analyse the chemical. Quite frankly this is a disgrace. There were thousands of fish bodies to analyse – they could still be analysing if they had kept some and frozen them.

“It was a devastating spill and its effects will last years. The interview with Mr Wilson has infuriated many people in Templepatrick and Antrim because the Minister has said that he needs public support to succeed in prosecuting polluters. There could not be more public support in the area for catching the culprits!

“One of the reasons that good samples of the pollution were not obtained is because the Rivers Agency will not accept samples from the public for analysis. What public support could be better than a promptly taken sample, yet Mr Wilson wants more? He would probably like the offender just to own up and save him having to make any effort into solving the crime.

“The sad thing is that even if an offender did own up, they would most likely get away with a warning letter or small fine. The punishments handed out for pollution offences have been pathetic in the past.”


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