Sewage leak contaminates school play area

CleanSafe Services clean-up process minimises disruption to pupils.
Maintenance company praises CleanSafe Services for quality of clean-up job
Emergency sewage cleaning delivered by CleanSafe Services helped prevent the closure of a primary school after human waste from a water treatment plant flooded the playground.

Heavy rain led to the leak of effluent from a sewage treatment plant located in the grounds of a primary school in the North West of England.

The treatment plant was built to handle all the foul water from the school, but the rain and deep surface water combined to cause effluent from the plant to flood the children’s play area.

This was potentially a serious situation, which could have put the children’s health at risk. There was potential for them to be exposed to dangerous bacteria that can cause disease.

Lab tests for E. coli in primary school playground
Pumping station maintenance and repair company H2O Flowtech took samples of the contaminated playground surface.

The company sent swabs to be laboratory-tested for a range of bacteria including E. coli, which can be carried in raw sewage. E. coli infection can cause serious illness, including sickness and diarrhoea in vulnerable people and children. Symptoms of infection include nausea, vomiting and fever.

H2O Flowtech then brought in CleanSafe Services to safely clean and sanitise the play area and remove any sewage.

“You can’t take any chances with sewage flooding”
CleanSafe Services technician David Orriss said: “With something as important as children’s health, you can’t take any chances with sewage flooding. We are a specialist extreme cleaning company. Most cleaning companies – even commercial ones – don’t have the experience and the equipment that we have when cleaning up areas contaminated by sewage.

“Our sister company, WasteSafe Services, is a licensed waste carrier authorised to dispose of hazardous waste including raw sewage once we’ve cleaned it up.

“We work methodically to follow a process proven to clean sewage and prevent future problems. We always start with a site and risk assessment and then prepare our detailed RAMS (Risk and Method Statements).

“The process is divided into stages, including containing and removing the sewage, cleaning and sanitising, investigating the source of the problem and restoration or repairs if required. We use equipment and safe cleaning products not available to the general public.”

Paths and grounds jetwashed and spray sanitised
David Orriss and colleague Peter Sobieralski went to work raking and bagging leaves and all loose material; lifting, jetwashing and sanitising artificial grass and sanitising the ground below before replacing it; and cleaning the summer houses, swings and slides. The play areas and pathways were all jetwashed and spray sanitised.

Play area given the all-clear
After CleanSafe Services completed the sewage clean-up of the playground, further swabs were taken. The area was re-tested, this time producing a clear result with no E. coli bacteria found.

H2O Flowtech Director Mark Fielding said: “The service from CleanSafe Services has been absolutely spot-on. Working with them was fast and straight-forward from start to finish. I was impressed with the quality of the clean-up and I would definitely use them again.”

Working with CleanSafe Services
CleanSafe Services is an emergency extreme cleaning company that is always on call to deal with hazardous waste such as sewage and works closely with businesses nationwide.

Sewage leaks and spills happen in a variety of domestic and commercial situations.

CleanSafe Services works with customers including plumbing and construction firms, sewage treatment plant managers, local authorities, facilities managers, the NHS and prisons.

Sister company WasteSafe Services is classified as an upper tier waste carrier by the Environment Agency and holds registration with the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency to carry category 3 ABP waste. It is licensed to carry and dispose of hazardous waste, such as raw sewage.

Find out more about:

CleanSafe Services

H2O Flowtech