Is River Sid pollution making its way down to the beach?

Flooding, runoff and ‘pollution risk’ – in the press and online:

The Sid River was very full over the weekend – although not as high as during the floods of 2012:

River Sid floods in The Byes Sidmouth 7th July 2012 – YouTube

And the Sid was not as full as other rivers in East Devon;

A deluge of rain in areas of Devon on Sunday afternoon resulted in many rivers breaching their banks and floodwater settling on roads and farmland.

Flood alerts for parts of East Devon: Clear-up likely to take ‘several days’

One area of concern is the extent to which ‘pollution’ is getting into the River and then into the sea.

Here is a piece from Devon Live from the weekend – which seems to confuse ‘runoff’ from ‘urban’ areas and ‘runoff’ from ‘rural areas’:

Beaches on both the south and north side of Devon are affected, including tourist hot spots Torquay, Salcombe and Exmouth. The main contributing factor to polluted beaches is urban runoff, which sees fertilizers, pesticides, oil, and untreated human and animal waste all entering waterways, such as rivers.

Dozens of Devon beaches slapped with pollution alerts after heavy downpours – Devon Live

The Herald gave similar warnings from over the weekend – specifically mentioning Sidmouth:

Sewage warnings at East Devon beaches after heavy rainfall | Sidmouth Herald

With maps and more from SAS:

Flooding, runoff and ‘pollution risk’ – a more nuanced approach:

However, whilst the latest from the Herald refers to issues of public concern over pollution in our waters, there are no specific references to the River Sid and Sidmouth’s beaches: 

Regulators ‘may have broken the law against sewage’ | Sidmouth Herald

Besides, Sidmouth’s beaches  have the Blue Flag award, which is the highest national accolade for quality bathing water:

Blue Flag status is only awarded to beaches that have high standards of cleanliness, safety and environmental management.

Sidmouth Town Beach retains Blue Flag Award

There is clearly concern from the public – but we do have to be cautious with the information. 

Here’s a piece from Ed Dolphin explaining things very well:

Sewage spill around Sidmouth’s beach: what’s it all about? – The Sid

As for maps, the SWW’s own new system gives very accurate information:

Bathing water quality | WaterFit Live | South West Water