Swimmers have been warned not to enter the sea along a popular stretch of beach after two sewage leaks polluted the water and flooded beach huts in an area of St Leonards, East Sussex.
The first sewage pipe burst on Wednesday night, followed by a second on Friday morning.
Emergency repair teams from Southern Water arrived to fix the first burst pipe under the cycle path at Bulverhythe beach on Friday morning, and while there they discovered the second leak.
Hastings Borough Council has closed the beach and said it is expecting the Environment Agency to ban bathing at other nearby beaches until the situation is resolved.
A spokesman for the council said: “Hastings Borough Council is obviously very disappointed indeed that there has been a further serious sewage leak at Bulverhythe, affecting the beach huts and the beach.
“The council has had to close the beach at Bulverhythe as a result, and is advising people not to go onto the affected part of the beach, or to go into the sea there.
“We are expecting the Environment Agency to warn against bathing at other Hastings beaches.
“We obviously hope that the leak is fully repaired as quickly as possible, and that the beach is cleaned and reopened.”
Southern Water said it evacuated the area overnight on Wednesday following the initial burst.
A spokesman said engineers found the fault site and identified the cause as a 'leaking collar' - where two pipes join together.
He added: “We have been working hard to contain and minimise a spill after a burst to a very large sewer pipe, carrying upward of 540 litres per second of wastewater, at Bulverhythe Beach on Wednesday afternoon.
“Tankers were able to maintain flows and wastewater services while the pipe was turned off to start the repairs.
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“Unfortunately early this morning (Friday) we reached our network storage capacity in the area and took the tough decision to turn the pumping station back on to support control of the network and increase storage to allow more time to complete the repairs.
“This did mean we split from the original burst location for a second time, but after careful consideration it was determined this would minimise impact to the environment and beach.
“We are working closely with the Environment Agency and Hastings Borough Council on the matter. This decision was taken to prevent properties from flooding and mitigate against risk of further spills elsewhere.
“No pollution is acceptable to our customers or us and we apologise for the disruption this may have caused. We are committed to making the repair as quickly as possible and to minimising impact on the environment.”
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