River Lea oil spill: Lock-down continues between Tottenham and Lea Bridge weir to contain pollution

PUBLISHED: 17:10 28 February 2018 | UPDATED: 17:04 30 October 2018

Volunteers help out with the clean-up operation following the River Lea oil spill. Picture: Canal and River Trust

Volunteers help out with the clean-up operation following the River Lea oil spill. Picture: Canal and River Trust

canal and river trust

A section of the Lea has been reopened, following a major oil spill polluting the river.

Boaters were told to stay put on February 20 to avoid spreading the oil.

Movement was restricted between Stonebridge Lock just north of Tottenham and the bottom lock of the Hertford Union Canal in Hackney Wick.

But the gates have now been unlocked from the Lea Bridge weir southwards.

The Environment Agency’s (EA) investigation into where the thick, black and “acrid” oil came from is still ongoing.

A spokesman for the Canal and River Trust thanked the scores of volunteers who helped out with the clean up operation this week.

He said: “The EA has big machines which suck the oil off the water, and we have been putting in pads which suck up the oil and then you go and collect it. Because the oil has been so thick it gathers a lot of debris, so the volunteers are picking out the sticks and litter it collected in.

“We are trying to get the Navigation open as quickly as possible, but dealing with the oil spill is the priority.”

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