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HomeNewsNine Kent Beaches Hit With 'Do Not Swim' Warnings

Nine Kent Beaches Hit With ‘Do Not Swim’ Warnings

A total of nine Kent beaches have been hit with ‘do not swim’ warnings following sewage discharge caused by recent storms.

The Environment Agency has issued the warning to a number of beaches across much of the county’s north and south-east coasts.

The warnings apply to Sheerness, Leysdown, West Beach in Whitstable, Tankerton, Herne Bay, Folkestone, Sandgate, Hythe and Dymchurch.

People have reported seeing dark stains in the sea and ‘foul smells’ at various shorelines in the last 24 hours.

A warning was originally applied by environment campaign group Surfers Against Sewage to beaches in Folkestone, Hythe, Sandgate, Sheerness and Leysdown.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has confirmed the five warnings and extended them to a further four beaches.

2022 and this is still being allowed to happen – absolutely disgusting

A spokesperson for Southern Water said “This week’s thunder storms brought heavy rain which fell onto parched ground and couldn’t absorb surface run-off, meaning that more rain than usual overwhelmed our network.This led to some overflows – which are used to protect homes, schools, businesses and hospitals from flooding – spilling excess water into the sea in parts of West Sussex, including Seaford. These discharges are heavily diluted and typically 95% of them are rainwater”.

A spokesman for SOS Whistable said “Southern Water’s comments that these releases are ‘typically 95% rainwater’ deliberately plays down the seriousness of the situation and are potentially dangerous”.

The spokesperson for Southern Water also refused to get into the water to prove that the sewage is heavily diluted with rain water.

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