Failed pipe fitting blamed for caustic Devro leak

A PIPE fitting failure is being blamed for a caustic leak from the waste water treatment system at Devro’s Kelso plant that saw the business shut down its operations on Tuesday morning.

The company immediately notified Bathurst Regional Council of the leak.

Council general manager David Sherley said council staff had worked with Devro representatives to fix the problem.

“Bathurst Regional Council has been notified by Devro of an issue with their waste water treatment system,” Mr Sherley said in a statement to the Western Advocate on Tuesday.

“The discharge from Devro has been contained within council’s waste water infrastructure and council is undertaking monitoring and testing to assess if there has been any impact on council’s infrastructure.

“Council has met with Devro to provide assistance to the company to ensure it is able to recommence discharge into council’s sewer system as soon as possible.

“The discharge into council’s sewer system is governed by a trade waste agreement which contains conditions that must be complied with in terms of the quality of the waste discharged into the sewer network.

“Discharge into the network will resume once testing ensures these criteria are met.

“Council has been advised by Devro that the situation has been addressed.”

Devro managing director Beverley Munro said the plant was now operating again.

“An alkali was leaked and fully contained and controlled on-site within our waste water treatment system, internal controls were implemented and through this process higher than normal pH waste water levels were identified by Devro in effluent,” Ms Munro said.

“Bathurst Regional Council was contacted immediately in accordance with our standard operating procedures.

“The waste water treatment plant is now at normal levels.

“We have been working together with the council and the plant is now operational.

“At no stage throughout the process have there been safety issues for employees of Devro or the community.”

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