A COMPANY with a depot in Barry has been fined £20,000 following a pollution incident which killed fish in local rivers.

Calor Transport, a division of Calor Gas Ltd based in Warwick, was also ordered to pay full costs of £9,000.

The prosecution was brought by the Environment Agency Wales.

The court heard last week that on April 19, 2005, a tanker operated by Calor Transport left Cardiff Docks laden with styrene monomer, heading for a chemical installation in Barry.

Along the route through the Butetown tunnels, the A4232 to Culverhouse Cross and along Port Road towards Sully and into the chemical complex, the tanker lost 620 litres of the chemical.

Heavy rainfall on the day led to the chemical being washed through the road drainage systems and into the Cadoxton River, via Bullcroft Brook, near Michaelston Le Pit, north of Dinas Powys.

On April 21, 2005, the Agency were notified of a report of dead trout in the Cadoxton River. Agency Officers went immediately to the scene and began gathering the evidence.

Some 183 dead fish, mainly brown trout, were found over a 5km stretch of river.

After the case, Andi Kemp, Agency Investigating Officer said: "Any polluting matter can have a detrimental effect on the water quality of our streams and rivers.

"Companies must ensure they adequately contain materials and adopt a contingency plan if things go wrong.

"They need to be aware of the effects of the substances they're dealing with and to contact the relevant body if they suspect materials have escaped.

"This allows the Agency time to act and warn other water users or to take action to reduce the effects."