Poo, pee and toilet paper. The only three things that should ever be flushed down the toilet.
Believe it or not, other items like underwear, clothing, kids’ toys and even mobile phones have found their way into the sewer system.
More recently in the wake of the loo paper shortage, it’s been products like paper towel and wipes. Combine that with cooking oils and fats that have been poured down the sink, and it can lead to large, disgusting blockages known as fatbergs.
Hunter Water has seen a rise in the number of blockages at its wastewater treatment plants, prompting it to call on all of us to ‘Respect the Throne’.
“‘Respect the Throne’ is about getting people to think before they flush. We want to educate our community about the issues these items can cause in our pipes,” said Glen Robinson, Acting Executive Manager Service Delivery for Customers.
“Poo, pee and toilet paper are the only things that should ever be flushed. We understand people may be feeling frustrated if they can’t purchase toilet paper or have purchased alternatives to use, but it’s really important that if they need to use anything else, then they should bag and bin it instead.
“Products such as paper towel, tissues and wipes don’t break down quickly enough in water and can cause big, expensive blockages in our wastewater system or in a customer’s own pipes at their cost and inconvenience.
“Our workers have reported seeing a significant increase in these materials, particularly at our Burwood and Belmont wastewater treatment plants since the start of March, leading to blockages in our pumps and screening equipment.
“We have also removed an additional 22 tonnes of fatberg from our Morpeth wastewater treatment plant since the start of March.
“It’s a big problem that requires just a little change in our habits to solve. We encourage everyone to do their bit and ‘Respect the Throne’ by keeping wipes, paper towels and tissues out of our sewer system,” said Mr Robinson.
For more information on how to stop sewer problems from occurring, visit www.hunterwater.com.au