Wild Swimmers driven from rivers by Sewage Spills

Water companies are polluting bathing waters

The Times reports: Water companies are polluting some of Britain’s most picturesque rivers, from the Windrush in the Cotswolds to the Aire in Yorkshire, without facing a penalty for the vast majority of offenses.

Of 1,863 unlawful pollution incidents by water companies in rivers in England last year, 1,423 were registered as having no further action taken or no action recorded. There are 36 active investigations, but not one prosecution, for 2018.

Water UK, the trade association for the big water companies, said: “Water quality in our rivers is now better than at any time since the start of the Industrial Revolution, and there has been a big drop in the number of serious pollution incidents in recent years, down from over 130 in 2005 to 56 in 2018. But we are passionate about protecting and improving our environment, which is why water companies plan to reduce serious pollution incidents by 90% by 2025.”

Sian Griffiths writes: After years of front-crawling through any water available, I now swim breaststroke in rivers, keeping my head up stiffly, after suffering from a succession of ear and eye infections. I plaster up small cuts to keep out germ-filled liquid and try to shower quickly to avoid strange rashes.

The pleasures, however, still far outweigh the risks. Read more…

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