Uisce Éireann said it “fully recognises the seriousness” of an incident in which at least 5,000 fish have been killed in a Co Cork River.

The major fish kill is suspected to have been caused by a chemical spill from Freemount Water Treatment Plant in recent days.

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) said it is continuing to investigate a “pollution incident” in the River Allow in Co Cork.

Inform relevant bodies

In a statement released to the Irish Farmers Journal, Uisce Éireann said it “immediately informed the relevant bodies”.

“[We] are co-operating fully with IFI in relation to the investigation and clean-up of this incident.

“The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) have also been notified, and measures have been taken to ensure there can be no further discharge from the plant,” it said.

Uisce Éireann added that it would like to assure the community there has been no impact on the quality of drinking water.

“Any spillage occurred downstream of the intake point for the plant and therefore would not impact on quality of water entering supply.

“Our investigations are continuing and we will provide further updates in due course.”


IFI said its staff were onsite investigating the incident.

“IFI officers are still attempting to determine the scale of the kill, with fish mortalities observed up to 4km downstream of the source location.

“Water samples have been taken from the river to gather evidence of the discharge and source point of contamination, to advance any potential prosecution,” IFI added.


The River Allow is a tributary of the Munster Blackwater catchment at Freemount, north Co Cork.

The incident occurred in a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and the location is a noted spawning habitat for fish, IFI said.

Species of fish discovered dead include juvenile Atlantic salmon, brown trout, lamprey, eel, stone loach, roach and dace.

The river also supports a population of freshwater pearl mussel.