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The Central Board of Health has given First Choice Supermarket a deadline to clean up its gutters.

Chief Health Inspector Sharon Martin said the store had 14 days to start taking steps towards eliminating the odour emanating from liquid waste.

For years, customers and residents in the neighbouring communities of Yorks and Old Runway have been complaining about the stench coming from the gutters at the Anchorage Road establishment.

A two-inch PVC pipe, a warning letter said, was emptying contents from the supermarket into an open mud drain on the southern side of the main road. That drain borders the two residential communities.

In the letter, Martin said she had a face-to-face discussion with the manager two months ago about what she termed “the daily incessant flow of untreated effluent”.

It was followed by a detailed inspection that revealed “an accumulation of stagnant water”, black in colour which CBH likened to a cesspool.

They deduced that discoloration of the water was as a result of continuous deposition of untreated waste liquid and build-up of anaerobic bacteria.

Martin said the smell is so bothersome that she had received several complaints and threats to protest outside her office from residents, visitors and passersby who travel along Anchorage Road.

The supermarket has two weeks from the receipt of the letter to either find a way to absorb the fluids daily, set up storage holding tanks for the waste water or install a sewage treatment plant.

The Chief Health Inspector said the situation is a nuisance to the environment as outlined in the country’s Public Health Nuisance Act.

Martin confirmed to Observer that the letter was written by her but declined to comment further at this time.

Observer was unable to reach First Choice management for comment.

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