PEOPLE are being urged to report any pollution they spot in Tyersal Beck to help track its source.

Councillor Richard Lewis has noticed a strange washing-up liquid or disinfectant type pollutant in the beck that flows through his ward and has reported his sightings to the Environment Agency.

So the culprit or source can be traced, he has put out an appeal to anyone else who notices any pollutants to report what they have seen straight away so the area's becks and waterways can be kept clean.

“Tyersal Beck which joins Pudsey Beck before running into the balancing reservoir on the Ring Road is usually very clear, but there have been at least three incidents of pollution in as many months," said Cllr Lewis (Lab, Pudsey).

"Even though these have been reported to the Environment Agency, it hasn’t been possible to trace the source because they didn’t know soon enough.

“I’m asking all local people to watch out and for any further incidents and report them as soon as they can. It’s only through prompt notification that we can ensure the water quality of the beck and the continued survival of it as a living environment.

“Of course this goes for all waterways across the ward and I hope everyone feels able to report pollution wherever they see it.”

An Environment Agency spokesman urged people to tell it promptly about any incidents of pollution so its officers were better placed to stop any damage and to track down the culprits.

The spokesman said: “Anyone who sees any pollution in a watercourse, or any dead fish, is urged to report the matter to the Environment Agency’s 24-hour incident hotline on 0800 807060 so we can investigate.

"Contacting us promptly is important, because our officers may be able to halt the flow of the pollutant and limit the extent that the pollution is having on the environment and wildlife.”

Pollutants in the beck could cause a problem for vegetation and micro-organisms on the floor of the beck.

In 2007, mounds of foam were spotted at intervals down the stretch of water along the beck, which runs close to Pudsey Beck and has a couple of other watercourses going into it.

The Environment Agency investigated it but had difficulty tracing the source then. It looked as though someone had poured washing-up liquid into the water.

The incident was reported to the agency when a resident whose garden the beck flows through, became concerned at the height the foam, there were also reports that ducks were getting distressed by the foam and their ducklings were getting lost in it.

Anyone found guilty of polluting a watercourse faces a fine of up to £2,000 or a prison sentence if they are brought before the courts.