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Environmental protection measures put in place following a fire at a scrapyard have been attacked by vandals, Natural Resources Wales has said.
On Wednesday, September 1, a fire broke out at SL Recycling Ltd’s scrapyard on Penallta Industrial Estate, involving more than 200 tonnes of machinery and recycling materials, including metal and plastic.
Firefighters attended the scene but were unable to fully extinguish the blaze until 9am on Friday, September 3.
Following the fire, oil and petrol from the site seeped into the nearby Nant Cylla brook, killing fish and polluting the water.
As part of its response, NRW put barriers, pipes, pads, and sandbags in Nant Cylla in a bid to stop the pollution from spreading.
However, by Tuesday, September 7, these had been damaged by vandals who had pulled them out of the water.
In a statement, NRW said: “Pipes that were inserted into nearby streams to allow clear water to run through after a large quantity of oil and petrol were found in the water, have been taken out and the dams and sandbags damaged.
“The bunding and matting in the Nant Cylla and booms and pads in nearby local water courses that were placed to absorb the oil and petrol run off from the site, have also been removed.
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“These protection measures are vital in helping our officers to minimise the amount of damage caused to the environment and the wildlife that depends on the river, as well as helping to make them safe for the local community to enjoy.”
NRW said its officers had been at the site on Wednesday morning to reinstate the dams and are working with Spill Response Wales to replace the booms and pads.
The statement continued: “In the interest of people’s safety, whilst the clean-up operation is ongoing, we would ask people to continue to avoid contact with the water and not allow any children or pets to enter the river.
“Anyone who sees any acts of vandalism or has any environmental concerns is encouraged to report it to us on 0300 065 3000.”
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