Fatbergs clogging municipal waste pipes
The District of Muskoka is asking residents to help them fight “fatbergs”.
The District says fatbergs are large masses that can form in your home, and in Muskoka’s wastewater pipes and pumps. They are made of fats, oils and grease that should not be disposed of down the drain.
Once cooled and hardened they stick to pipes and pumps and combine with things like wipes and feminine products that also should not be flushed, the mass grows into a giant fatberg that can block pipes in the wastewater system, and the pipes inside your home.
The District is urging residents, property owners and businesses to think before they pour. Only flush the three (3) P’s: pee, poo and toilet paper – never pour fats, oils and grease down the drain.
The District says there is no such thing as a “flushable wipe" and residents should only flush the three Ps – pee, poo and toilet paper. The following items will cause blockages. Don’t flush them, even though they seem small and will go down your toilet or drain.
- No wipes (even those labelled flushable)
- No feminine hygiene products
- No dental floss
- No tissues
- No paper towels
- No medicine/prescriptions
Products that say they’re flushable – like wipes – may make it down your toilet, but they might not make it through the sewer. There are currently no regulations to specify which products can be labelled “flushable”.
Clogged pipes can cause:
- raw sewage back-ups into your home and your neighbours home
- raw sewage overflows into neighbourhood yards, parks and streets
- service disruptions, including water outages
- potential contact with disease-causing bacteria
- likely messy and expensive basement clean-ups and or sewer line cleanup, as it may not be covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy
- increased operational and maintenance costs for the District, which causes higher sewer and water rates for residents