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Milnerton Lagoon suffers yet another sewage spill

Milnerton residents demonstrating over the ongoing pollution at the lagoon.

Milnerton residents demonstrating over the ongoing pollution at the lagoon.

Published May 20, 2022

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Cape Town - The Milnerton Central Residents Association has warned residents to avoid contact with water at the Milnerton Lagoon following yet another raw sewage spill into the Diep River.

The spills have since been contained after a pump station failure which had left a foul stench that is still lingering in the Milnerton and surrounding areas.

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The association recently raised concerns over the continued frequent discharge of large volumes of poorly treated effluent from the Potsdam Wastewater Treatment Plant in December 2021 and January this year into the Diep River.

On March 2, about 500 small dead fish were seen at the mouth of the Milnerton Lagoon.

Milnerton Central Residents Association environmental head Caroline Marx said the City was not doing enough to stop the flows into the Lagoon. Marx said an overflow pond to catch spills at the Koeberg Road pump station was requested years ago.

“Allowing raw sewage to flow into a nature reserve every time the pump station fails is not acceptable. The over-pumping and sandbagging presumably helped but do not appear to have prevented large quantities of raw sewage from entering the river system yet again,” she said.

Marx said the City’s interventions appeared inadequate at preventing large volumes of raw sewage from entering the Diep River.

Mayco member Zahid Badroodien said the Koeberg Pump Station at the Theo Marais Canal had reportedly failed due to a faulty electrical drive and the incident was attended to urgently.

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“Sandbags were installed on the weir to raise the level and contain the majority of the sewage. Bio-enzymes were applied.

“The City’s Water Pollution Control conducted sampling. A mobile pump was used to remove sewage from the containment area,” he said.

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