Water run off from Tottenham warehouse fire did kill hundreds of fish in River Lea

Thousands of dead fish have been spotted in the River Lea. Picture: Heather Hampson

Thousands of dead fish have been spotted in the River Lea. Picture: Heather Hampson - Credit: Archant

Water run off from a warehouse fire in Tottenham did kill hundreds of fish in the River Lea, say experts who initially denied it was the cause.

The Environmental Agency's (EA) investigation has now shown that the incident in late May was linked to the fire nearby.

Since late May when Clapton Boaters reported the "awful" sight the carcasses of the dead fish have been removed from the waterway by the Canal and River trust. The removal took almost a week and was completed by June 2.

Boaters had believed water run off was the cause and say workers confirmed it to them, but the EA initially told the Gazette that was not the case.

A spokesperson has now said: "Our investigation into a pollution incident in the River Lea in May shows it was caused by some of the water used to fight a substantial building fire nearby becoming contaminated by materials. The sheer amount of water used tackling the blaze meant it was impossible to prevent some of it entering the river and affecting fish."

"Environment Agency officers and the Canal and River Trust were quickly on scene to reduce the impact of the pollution."

"We are confident that the River Lea and fish numbers will recover naturally."

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