Advice against the public entering the water at Skateraw and Thorntonloch beaches has been lifted following water sampling.

Advice not to fish in the immediate area has also been lifted following the sampling results.

The advice had been put in place earlier this week as a precautionary measure following an electrical fault at a nearby substation. This resulted in some overflow of oil and cooling water running into the drainage system, with subsequent reports of discoloured water in the sea.

A multi-agency team has been meeting regularly to closely monitor the situation.

Tom Reid, Head of Infrastructure, East Lothian Council, said:

“The situation had continued to improve throughout the week, with a multi-agency team having been closely monitoring the situation.

“All agencies responded swiftly and worked together to ensure the issue was dealt with appropriately, with protecting the environment and public safety being our top priorities. We are pleased that water sampling results have indicated zero traces of oil.

“We are very grateful to members of the public for their patience and understanding and are pleased that we can now lift the advice against people entering the water at Skateraw and Thorntonloch.”

The substation is operated by SP Energy Networks and located within the grounds of EDF’s Torness Power Station.

Stephen Kelly, Transmission Network Operations Manager for SP Energy Networks, said:

“We’re very pleased to see the precautionary restrictions regarding Skateraw and Thorntonloch beaches now lifted. This is testament to the tremendous team effort we’ve seen from all agencies throughout the week and our thanks to everyone involved for their support and cooperation. Our focus is now on progressing our ongoing investigation into what happened.”

Anyone requiring to report pollution to SEPA they can do so via their 24/7 hotline 0800 80 70 60 or by using the on-line reporting form: Report Environmental Events to SEPA

Published: Friday, 15th July 2022