David Egan, partner in the Environmental Law Group, has recently acted for a global property management company in relation to a pollution incident which occurred at a major shopping centre in the UK.
The pollution incident involved an escape of a hazardous chemical which was being used in the refurbishment of a huge car park which was part of the shopping centre complex.
It appears that the containers of hazardous chemicals were subject to a malicious and determined attack by unknown perpetrators. This led to the hazardous chemical being dispersed on the upper level of the car park and ultimately running into the public drains and finally into a public brook. The ultimate effect of the pollution of the public waterway was to cause the death of many thousands of fish and other aquatic life due to the de-oxygenation of the watercourse.
A full investigation has taken place by the Environment Agency. The agency has decided not to commence legal proceedings against the property management company. However, the agency is closely considering whether to instigate legal proceedings against the principal contractor involved in the refurbishment of the car park and the sub-contractor who was responsible for the use and safeguarding of the hazardous chemical.
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