Management of a cement plant upstream of France’s capital city blame sabotage for unnamed pollutants that leaked into the Seine River, local media report.
The Paris prosecutor’s office announced this week that an investigation is ongoing into the dumping of hazardous materials into the Seine and whether the pollution has tainted the city’s drinking water.
LafargeHolcim, one of the world’s largest cement makers, has filed a complaint charging that someone vandalized a panel blocking drainage, allowing wastewater to spill into the Seine. Measures have been taken to repair the damage, the company said.
The company also promised better security to prevent a repeat of the incident.
Health officials report that the plant passed its last environmental inspection in February 2019 with no violations.
Associations Agréées de Pêche et de Protection du Milieu Aquatique, an association representing fishermen, states that it has video showing a concrete truck emptying its contents into a pierced tank that allowed pollution to flow into the Seine.
In a press release, LafargeHolcim referred to the video as “a completely exceptional incident beyond its control,” again blaming a damaged panel for the pollution.