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Home / Your water services / Local improvements / Improving waste water services / Hull and Saltend news

Hull and Saltend news

Welcome to our Hull and Saltend web page where you'll find all the latest news about what's happening in your area.

If you'd like to know about developments as we add them to our website, you can subscribe to this page - click on the link at the bottom of the page and you'll be notified by email whenever there's something new.

UPDATE - Friday 23 August 2013

Following the completion of the work mentioned in last week's update, the biological treatment process continues to recover and the odour mitigation measures are working well.

We have not received any odour complaints so far this week, which is a positive sign after recent weeks and we would like to apologise to customers for the inconvenience caused and thank them for their patience whilst the work to rectify the problem was carried out.

We continue to review the site's performance and will provide a further update in due course.

Customers should continue to report any odours to our helpline on 0345 1 24 24 24.

  

UPDATE - Wednesday 14 August 2013

 

As mentioned in our previous updates, a routine but detailed investigation into one of the odour complaints found an issue which reduced our treatment capacity by 25% and in turn resulted in overloading of the biological treatment process. We rectified this problem very quickly but the biological treatment process was compromised and the recovery process can take time. We constantly monitor the performance of the bio treatment and are taking all steps to ensure it recovers as soon as possible.

However, we are aware that whilst the process is recovering there is an increased risk of odours escaping beyond the site boundary. Under normal circumstances this biological process would not be a source of odour and therefore the site odour mitigation systems are not designed to control these emissions. All of our odour mitigation measures are working well and other aspects of the site are performing well.

We apologise that our processes have not operated as reliably as we would like and that this has impacted on our customers. We would like to assure you that we are undertaking a full review of the site's performance, focusing on the root cause of the mechanical failures, and will look to implement changes to our operations to prevent a re-occurrence.

  

UPDATE - Friday 9 August 2013

 

As you may be aware we now have in place the two temporary odour control units to fully odour control the parts of the works covered by the fire damaged unit.

During our investigations two weeks ago into likely causes of odour at the site we found a potential source and chose to tackle it by increasing the flows of water and organic matter through two of our open air tanks. We carried out this work last week and unfortunately the actual process of flushing through can in the very short-term increase odours. We received 20 complaints about odour during last week mostly during the time we were carrying out this work.

So far this week there have been seven odour complaints received. The new organic matter which breaks down the bugs that can cause odour in the tanks takes a few days to become fully active. We are hoping that customers will start to experience a noticeable reduction in odours in the next few days as the matter starts to work.

We continue to use deodorising sprays to mask odours as they reach the perimeter of our site and we will continue to do everything we can from an operational perspective to tackle odours on what is a priority works for us.

  

UPDATE - Wednesday 31 July 2013

 

Over the weekend we carried out some operations to try to improve the flow of waste water through the site. Following the complaints we had received as always we investigated them and during this we found that there were low flows in two of our open air tanks which can lead to reduced odours. We took action over the weekend to increase the flow of water and organic matter (bugs) to breakdown the concentrated waste water which could have been causing odours in those tanks.

This work can sometimes itself cause a smell and will take a few days to take full effect whilst the organic matter starts to multiply. However, the longer-term effects should be to reduce odour.

Over the weekend we received 14 contacts about odour at the site. In the last two days we have received four contacts.

Both mobile Odour Control Units are now fully operational and are covering the work done by the unit that was damaged in the recent fire. We are also using the deodorising sprays around the perimeter fence to help mask any odours as they reach the site boundaries.

  

UPDATE - Friday 26 July 2013

 

As stated in our previous update, we have now achieved full odour control of the site following the fire on the original odour control unit. Both the mobile control units that we brought in after the fire and also the new odour control unit continue to perform well. However, we are aware that odour complaints continue to be reported to us. We are very sorry that this is the case and have continued to fully investigate every report of odour.

During one such recent investigation, we have discovered issues related to our large treatment units at the north end of the site. This has reduced our capacity to treat all incoming flows and is resulting in odours. We have acted quickly to mitigate the effects of this problem and during today (26 July 2013) we are working hard to ensure that things return back to normal as soon as possible. We are hoping to see an improvement by the early part of next week but we anticipate that the odour levels may increase for a short time over the weekend.

We continue to operate masking sprays and still working as hard as we can to reduce the likelihood of odours escaping beyond the boundary of our site.

 

 

UPDATE - Tuesday 23 July 2013

 

As of last Thursday, we are now back to where we were prior to the fire in terms of our ability to control odours around the site.

However, whilst we have been working hard to get back to this position, a number of people have experienced odours from the site, and we'd like to apologise for this.

We are listening, and we remain fully committed to doing everything we can to manage odours on our site.  By getting in touch with us, you're helping us to pinpoint when any unacceptable odours have occurred, and take appropriate action to resolve any issues.

We continue to operate odour masking sprays around the site when appropriate, and a regular programme of ferric dosing is further helping us to control any odours around the plant.

Whilst there is always likely to be some odour owing to the operational nature of the site - it's one of Europe's biggest waste water facilities which treats up to 40 million gallons of waste water every day, including a complex mix of trade effluent - we'll continue to work hard to manage and reduce any odours as much as possible.

  

UPDATE - Thursday 18 July 2013

 

We are very grateful to local MP Graham Stuart for taking the time to talk to our Chief Executive Richard Flint this morning about odours in the Saltend area.

Mr Flint reaffirmed our commitment to tackling odours from our Hull Waste Water Treatment Works. He also confirmed that we will continue to keep local representatives and customers informed about site issues throughout the summer and beyond.

We invested £3.5 million to install a new odour control unit at the works which became fully operational last year. In June a fire on site caused damage to the older odour control unit, which affected our ability to control odours. We have since installed two temporary odour control units to do the work of the fire damaged unit and we continue to use chemical dosing in the treatment process and deodorising sprays which we have installed along the perimeter fence all in an effort to help prevent odours leaving our site.

  

UPDATE - Wednesday 17 July 2013

 

Following the recent fire at our Hull waste water treatment works, which irreparably damaged the smaller of our two odour control units, we wanted to update you on the progress we've made to mitigate its loss and ensure we're as well placed as possible to manage and control any odours from the site.

In the week following the fire, we successfully diverted some of the odours which were previously fed through the now defunct smaller unit, to the larger £3.5m unit, which continues to perform well.

As a temporary measure, we also brought in two mobile odour control units. These mobile units mitigate the loss of our smaller unit in the short-term and ensure we have the same capacity to control odours around the site as we did prior to the fire.

Prior to Tuesday 16 July, certain parts of the site were not fully odour controlled, and consequently, given the very warm weather conditions, there have been occasions when we've detected an increase in odours, which we'd like to apologise for.

We continue to operate odour masking sprays around the site when appropriate, and a regular programme of ferric dosing is further helping us to control any odours around the plant.

Whilst there is always likely to be some odour owing to the operational nature of the site - it's one of Europe's biggest waste water facilities which treats up to 40 million gallons of waste water every day, including a complex mix of trade effluent - we'll continue to work hard to manage and reduce any odours as much as possible.

  

UPDATE - Thursday 11 July 2013

Following the recent fire at our Hull waste water treatment works, which irreparably damaged the smaller of our two odour control units, we wanted to update you on the progress we've made to mitigate its loss and ensure we're well placed to manage and control any odours from the site.

In the week following the fire, we successfully diverted some of the odours which were previously fed through the now defunct smaller unit, to the larger £3.5m unit, which continues to perform well.

 As a temporary measure, we also brought in  two mobile odour control units, and the first of these is now fully connected and working well, with the team working hard to fully install the second of these units to ensure the site is fully odour controlled.

These mobile units will mitigate the loss of our smaller unit in the short-term and ensure we have the same capacity to control odours around the site as we did prior to the fire.

We continue to operate odour masking sprays around the site when appropriate, and a regular programme of ferric dosing is further helping us to control any odours around the plant.

We're looking at possible long-term permanent solutions to mitigate the loss of the fire damaged unit and we'll keep you updated on what any plans look like as we know more.

  

UPDATE - Wednesday 3 July 2013

mobile

CAPTION: Picture shows work to connect the two mobile odour control units, which have been introduced as a temporary measure.

Following the recent fire at our Hull waste water treatment works, which irreparably damaged the smaller of our two odour control units, a huge amount of work is ongoing to mitigate its loss and ensure we're well placed to manage and control any odours from the site.

In the week following the fire, we successfully diverted some of the odours which were previously fed through the now defunct smaller unit, to the larger £3.5m unit, which continues to perform well.

As a temporary measure, we have also brought in two mobile odour control units which we're working hard to install, with a view to having both of these up and running in the next couple of days. These mobile units will mitigate the loss of our smaller unit in the short-term and ensure we have the same capacity to control odours around the site as we did prior to the fire.

We're already looking at possible long-term permanent solutions to mitigate the loss of the fire damaged unit and we'll keep you updated on what any plans look like as we know more.


UPDATE - Tuesday 25 June 2013

Following last week's fire at our Hull waste water treatment works, we're working hard to mitigate the loss of the smaller of our two onsite odour control units, which was irreparably damaged.

Over the course of the weekend, we successfully diverted some of the odours which were previously fed through the now defunct smaller unit, to the larger £3.5 million unit, which continues to perform well.

To build on this progress, we are now looking at what other additional resources we could draw upon to ensure we continue to effectively manage odours around the site.

We would like to reassure you that we remain acutely aware that we're approaching a critical time of year for the plant and that our contingency plans are being considered at the very highest levels within the company.

To keep you up to speed with developments at the site, we propose to provide you with weekly emailed updates every Wednesday. We'll be updating our website with all the latest information which can be found at yorkshirewater.com/saltend .


Fire - Hedon Road, Hull

SaltendFollowing this morning's fire at our Hull waste water treatment works, which is now fully extinguished, we can confirm that the smaller of our two odour control units has been damaged beyond repair.

We are currently working hard to understand what impact, if any, this will have on our ability to control odours from the site and exploring what options are available to us, should we need to draw on additional resources.

The new and much larger £3.5 million odour control unit which was recently commissioned continues to operate as normal. The treatment process has been unaffected by the fire.

We're working with the fire service to establish the cause of the blaze, which is unknown at this stage, and would like to thank them for all their efforts this morning.

We continue to liaise closely with all relevant stakeholders and for latest updates you can follow us on Twitter @yorkshirewater

ENDS

Hull Waste Water Treatment Works at Saltend opened in 2000 and treats more than 40 million gallons of sewage and industrial effluent every day.

When it opened it ended the decades-old practice of discharging raw sewage into the Humber Estuary.


Early warnings and notices

Maintenance
Occasionally we need to do essential maintenance or health and safety checks on our machinery at our treatment works which might result in increased odours in the area. We keep such work to a minimum but we'd like to keep you well informed about what we're planning to do.  

Further investment

We take reports of odours seriously and appreciate the impact strong smells can have on the quality of life of those who live close to the site.

We've already invested significantly in improvements both to the existing odour control units and the inlets at the plant, improving the efficiency of both.

However, an additional £3m is to be spent at the site. The money will be spent on the construction of a new odour control unit, with construction work expected to begin in late spring 2011.

To keep up to date with the project use our 'subscribe to this page' link.


How we monitor odours


Odour Control Unit

A new odour control unit will significantly help to reduce odours from our Hull waste water treatment works in Hedon, is now up and running.

After three weeks of successful trials, engineering specialist Morgan Sindall have confirmed that it is operating as it should and given the go-ahead for the unit to 'go live'.

At twice the size of the current on-site facility and costing £3.5 million, the new unit is the biggest in the region.  Operating alongside the existing facility, it will take air from the sludge processing part of the plant - typically the most odorous area - and treat it using Turkish pumice infused with natural 'good' bacteria in 10 large black tanks.

Tests carried out at the stack over the trial period have revealed that no hydrogen sulphide - the gas that gives off 'a rotten egg' like odour - has been emitted from the facility's 28 metre high chimney.

The odour control unit's primary purpose is to pull air and associated odour from specific areas around the site and treat this air to reduce the odour in the atmosphere.

Odour Control UnitThe odour control unit extracts 40,000 cubic metres of air per hour. The air is then sent through three chemical scrubbers which dose with sulphuric acid in the primary stage, sodium hypochlorite in the second stage and caustic sodium hydroxide in the third stage.

After being treated in the chemical scrubbers the air is then forced through two carbon filters which reduce any final odours to a minimum.

Hydrogen sulphide levels are monitored before we use the odour control unit and afterwards to assess the performance of the unit continuously.  The incoming gases are measured in parts per million-ppm and the outgoing gases in parts per billion-ppb.

We sample the carbon filters regularly to assess how much it has been used and replace it at a determined level.


Odour Control Unit - air inlet pipe monitoring (14kb)


Odour Control Unit - air outlet pipe monitoring (14kb)


Odour Control Unit - Chemical dosage (20kb)

Odour loggers

We've installed small odour loggers around the local area to monitor odours. 

They test the air for Hydrogen sulphide levels and store these results within the unit, which are collected and downloaded every four weeks.

The results from these loggers are very useful to us to confirm the strength of the odours at each point, and help us to work on solutions to the odours reported in the area.


Wind direction and weather

The weather can determine how strong the odours are in the region. Similarly, the speed and direction of the wind might also influence who's affected by the odours.

The MetCheck website provides regular updates on the weather where our treatment works is located, including temperature and wind speed and direction.


Contact us

It's exWind direction and weather

The weather can determine how strong the odours are in the region. Similarly, the speed and direction of the wind might also influence who's affected by the odours.

The MetCheck website provides regular updates on the weather where our treatment works is located, including temperature and wind speed and direction. It's extremely unlikely that your health will be affected by any odour issues in your area.

If you'd like to contact us about issues in your area please phone us on 0845 1 24 24 24 .

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