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Serious pollution leak kills 'thousands' of fish

Salmon, trout, and other types of fish have died. Credit: PA

Thousands of fish have died after a serious pollution leak in Cumbria.

A team of Environment Agency officers are currently tackling the problem, at Skitwath and Dacre Becks, near Penruddock.

The pollution was reported by several members of the public who noticed dead fish and brown discolouration of the river on Tuesday afternoon.

Specialist Environment Officers and Fisheries Officers arrived at the scene to collect evidence and assess the extent of the pollution.

Initial investigations show that slurry has affected several miles of river, leading to the death of thousands of trout, salmon and other species of fish.

The source of the pollution has now been found and stopped.

The Environment Agency is currently raising the oxygen levels in the water, to minimise further damage to fish and other wildlife.

Officers will remain onsite for the next few days to monitor the situation.

Slurry kills – once it’s in the water it very quickly reduces oxygen levels and kills fish, insects and affects the whole ecosystem.

If a farmer notices a problem on their farm, they must get in touch with us immediately so that we can minimise the impacts as soon as possible.

The same goes for members of the public, who are a valuable source of information on pollution for us. Our incident hotline is 0800 807060 and open 24/7.”

– Stewart Mounsey, Environment Manager for Cumbria

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