Staff from the Waterford County Council environmental unit are investigating whether toxic waste has been dumped at Tramore landfill. A spokesperson for the Council said that staff at the Tramore landfill are also being interviewed as part of the process.
RTÉ News has already established that a trailer filled with effluent generated by a container cleaning company dumped material at Belview Harbour in Waterford. The EPA has confirmed that samples taken from Belview Harbour show evidence of a toxic compound.
The EPA found traces of creosote in samples of the effluent. Creosote contains phenol, which may be lethal if ingested or result in paralysis, coma and respiratory arrest. Last week, Waterford City Council stated its belief that effluent produced by the cleaning company, Belvue Container Cleaner Ltd, had been taken from Belview Harbour and regularly dumped into a manhole on nearby Frank Cassin Wharf, which then flowed into the Suir estuary.
One of the directors of BCC is Maurice Downey, a former Mayor of Waterford. The Council issued notices to BCC and Waterford Port for the dumping to cease immediately and stated that prosecutions could follow. RTÉ News has also established that a truck with the effluent was taken from Belview Harbour and put into a landfill in Tramore.
The environmental group, Coastwatch, claims this constitutes a health hazard and has called on the authorities to urgently remove it. Co-ordinator Karin Dubsky said that she was appalled, asserting high tides leak under the dump and so the creosote could leak into the sea and near-by wetlands.