Montreal

Saint-Hyacinthe could be to blame for thousands of dead fish in the Yamaska River

Mayor Claude Corbeil said he learned Monday morning that the expansion of a water treatment facility could be to blame.

Mayor Claude Corbeil thinks expansion of water treatment facility led to overflow of sewage

This photo of the dead fish in the Yamaska River was posted to the Facebook page of Spotted St-Hyacinthe on July 1. (Spotted St-Hyacinthe)

The City of Sainte-Hyacinthe said it could be responsible for the death of thousands of fish in the Yamaska River.

Mayor Claude Corbeil said he learned Monday morning that the expansion of a water treatment facility could be to blame.

Urgence-Environnement said some fish were found in the bottom of the river, discoloured and in an advanced state of decay on Friday after residents alerted authorities last week.

The construction work carried out at the facility on June 28 sent an overflow of waste water into the river. A high concentration of microbodies in the waste water combined with low levels in the river could be what killed the fish, according to the city.

"There is obviously a series of bad decision from the city's administration with this file," Corbeil said in a statement.

An internal investigation is underway.

With files from the Canadian Press and la Presse Canadienne

now