Kenting Beach Contaminated by Sewage Sludge

The waters of Nanwan Beach in Pingtung County’s Hengchun Township turned black this morning after sewage sludge was accidentally released from a sewage treatment plant.

Beach-goers said that the water suddenly turned black and smelly at around 11:00am today, May 1.

Surfers reported suffering from itchiness all over their bodies after being caught in the stinky slick.

Liberty Times reported that foreign tourists remained unaware of the problem and continued to swim in the surf zone.

Personnel from Pingtung County Environmental Protection Bureau, and the mayor of Hengchun showed up to investigate the problem.

According to officials, the problem was caused when an employee of the local sewage treatment works mistakenly opened a valve, and released sewage sludge from the bottom of a settling pond.

Pingtung County EPB has initiated proceedings to penalize the sewage treatment plant.

A surfer cited in the Liberty Times report said that sea turtles were present in the waters at the time, and that he was worried about the effect on marine organisms. The surfer expressed his hope that the EPB would deal with the problem, and prevent it from happening again.

sewage sludge flows out of a treatment pond at Kenting National Park
Sewage sludge flowed into the ocean after somebody mistakenly opened a valve at a sewage plant on Hengchun Peninsular in Pingtung County, May 1, 2018.

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