A ‘Do Not Swim’ notice has been issued for Kilkee beach following an emergency discharge of storm water containing elements of wastewater from the Kilkee pumping station into the sea via Kilkee beach.
On the advice of the HSE and in the interest of public health, Irish Water and Clare County Council are advising members of the public not to swim or engage in other recreational activities in the water at this time.
This emergency discharge occurred due to a failure in an operational safety device at the Kilkee Pumping Station, combined with heavy rainfall in the area over recent days.
As a consequence, the pumping station was unable to pump the larger than usual volume of combined storm and foul wastewater which is entering the system and it became necessary to release the excess storm water via the Victoria Stream into an overflow culvert which discharges into the sea on the west side of Kilkee beach.
Irish Water and Clare County Council are working as a matter of priority to resolve the issue and minimise the impact on Kilkee beach. This includes undertaking operational measures to allow for improved management of the large volumes of storm water entering the system. This work is due to be completed today (Wednesday, December 21).
In the longer term a number of improvements are being planned to address the deficiencies at the pumping station. A project team has been appointed to identify the necessary upgrade work and has reviewed a variety of options to facilitate these works. Irish Water and Clare County Council are working on this as a matter of priority with the aim of completing these works in time for the start of the 2017 bathing season.
In the interim, users of Kilkee beach are advised not to swim or engage in other water sports in the area. Beach users should avoid swallowing or splashing water and wash hands before handling food.
Irish Water apologises for any inconvenience that this incident may cause to the users of Kilkee beach and will continue to monitor the situation vigilantly and report any overflows to the relevant authorities.
For further information please contact Irish Water on 1850 278 278.