Our first ever blog post and what better topic than the one we have chosen for this month: the possibility of 10-ton ‘fatbergs’ in Australia. ‘What is a ‘fatberg?’, I hear you ask. It’s a congealed lump of fat, sanitary items, wet wipes, and similar items found in sewer systems, which do not break down like toilet paper.
If you have been listening to some of the ACT’s local radio stations of late, you may have heard an advert run by Icon water talking about the damage that ‘Flushable’ wet wipes are doing to not only your drainage system at home but also our local waste water treatment plants.
The companies that are marketing these so-called flushable wet wipes are coming up with very good marketing campaigns to try and switch people from using ordinary toilet paper to using these products without providing the appropriate information to consumers about how these wet wipes do not break down in our sewer systems.
It was only two weeks ago that we got called out to a commercial residential property that had pretty much a whole block of units without any flushing toilets. Upon arrival to the site we knew exactly where the problem was as this was not the first time that we had been called out to this building to repair blocked drains. When we finally managed to clear the blockage a great ball of flushable wet wipes that had caught on something in the drainage was pulled out.
We mentioned to the property manager that this was not the first time that we had pulled these wet wipes from the building sewer system and that something needed to be done to inform people at this complex to refrain from flushing these things down the toilet.
Check out this story of the damage these wet wipes have done to London’s trunk sewer system: The disgusting 10-ton ‘fatberg’ that broke a London sewer [external link].
Over and Out