Rockers The Dave Matthews Band are to atone for a shocking waste-dumping incident in Illinois by handing out cash to local charities and personally apologising to tourists at the centre of the mess.

The group was condemned back in August (04) when a tour bus drivers was accused of dumping human waste on sightseers on the Chicago River.

The Illinois Attorney General's office sued the band and the driver after the incident, alleging that the driver emptied the vehicle's septic tank while crossing a bridge over the river, dousing more than 100 tour boat passengers beneath with raw sewage.

The group wasn't onboard when the unfortunate incident took place, but now Matthews and his bandmates want to make amends.

DMB has contacted the boat owner and tour operator to try to identify the affected passengers. The driver was also been suspended and the group members are planning to donate $50,000 (GBP27,800) each to the Chicago Park District and a non-profit group that protects the Chicago River.

In a statement posted on the group's website, the band members say, "We hope by reaching out and helping now this will help demonstrate our commitment to step up if we are found to be the responsible party."

25/10/2004 21:15