Heavy rain, tidal surges and strong winds combined to threaten to flood a specially protected conservation
area in Eastbourne with raw sewage.
The weather conditions had satured the ground, causing silt and debris to threaten an overspill and flood from the sewer system running under West Langney Lake at Eastbourne Levels.
The resulting blockage could have caused a major pollution incident at the site, which is of national conservation interest (SNCI) and needed immediate action from a sewage flood response team.
Location of the blockage in the middle of the site is too far from the roadside for standard vacuum tankers to access.
Although there is an open drainage ditch named Langney Sewer, the actual sewerage system is enclosed and subterranean.
CountyClean Environmental Services brought in specialist equipment from their fleet to clear the debris and silt from deep underground.
To carry out this difficult work required their custom-built, high pressure water-jetting Portareel, fitted with caterpillar tracks, to cross the saturated site without damaging the land.
The Portareel acts as an extension allowing their tanker to remain on the roadside and extend its reach to one half of a kilometre.
Water was fed from the tanker under extremely pressure to a jetting head that propelled its way through the sewerage system clearing everything in its path and restoring normal flow.
CountyClean Environmental Services hit the headlines recently after the Eastbourne firm was called out to break up a giant ‘fatberg’ under the streets of London.
The blockage, the biggest ever seen on camera, was the size of a bus.