Shropshire Star

Source confirmed after YouTuber's video of 'poo slick' spotted in River Severn

The Environment Agency has revealed the source of the giant 'poo slick' spotted in the Severn after a water company came under fire.

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Last week, an angler took to his YouTube channel to share his disgust at what he said he believed to be sewage from an overflow pipe at Cressage, south of Shrewsbury.

YouTuber Rob, who did not wish to give his surname, said he spotted the slick on Thursday, June 13, which he said was "200 yards long", covered around a third of the river, and was accompanied by a "terrible" stench.

Following Rob's video, Severn Trent - the company Rob had blamed for the incident - went out to visit the site and categorically denied that it was responsible.

Picture: Rob's Angling/YouTube

Severn Trent Water said it had been out to make tests and could not find any sewage in the water adding that their works at Cressage didn't have a storm overflow outlet, and only returned fully treated water to the river.

Following the YouTuber's claim, the Environment Agency launched an investigation, which is now complete.

A spokesperson for the EA said that their results have indicated the slick was in fact "a natural occurring algal foam".

An article on the EA's website said that they receive "many reports" of suspected sewage pollution each year, in coastal waters in particular, that are in fact the breakdown of algal blooms.

Large blooms can give off the smell of rotten eggs or vegetables, a smell also given off by decomposing seaweed.

A spokesperson added: "It’s easy to mistake algae for sewage, particularly as both have an unpleasant smell, but if you notice foam on the water’s surface or on the beach it’s more likely to be the result of an algal bloom breaking down."

The EA wants members of the public to report any environmental concerns to their 24/7 hotline on 0800 807060.