Littlehampton bathing alert after sewage discharge

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Beach-goers in Littlehampton have been warned to avoid swimming after Southern Water pumped sewage into the sea.

The sewage was discharged on Wednesday when a valve failed at the West Sussex town's Sea Road pumping station.

At that point, Littlehampton Harbour Master said people should not swim for 48 hours after the discharge - but on Friday, Arun council advised against bathing until further notice.

Southern Water said it had to discharge the sewage to prevent flooding.

The company said the broken valve had risked the sewerage system backing up and flooding the town.

Some sewage was released into the sea and a temporary pumping station was set up to bypass the valve so normal treatment could be restored.

On Friday, the company said it aimed to complete repairs by the weekend.

That would now be next week and temporary pumps would remain in use until then, said the firm.

Spokesman Geoff Loader said the Environment Agency and council would make an announcement when it was safe to swim.

He said: "The water quality has been tested. It does take time for these test results to come back, but I think it would be unlikely that there would be any lasting effect."

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