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Fatberg Threatens to Flood London

If you feel queasy at the sight of congealed fat this blog probably isn’t for you. Waste fat forms a white greasy barrier when it starts to cool and this can be a huge problem for drains. Pouring used waste oil, fat or grease down the drain causes the problem. As is slowly cools it starts to condense and this can cause blockages in pipes and drains.

In London recently this took on a whole new level as a monster fatberg was discovered in the sewerage system beneath Whitechapel early in September. This was no ordinary sewer blockage. To put this in some type of physical context, the ‘berg’ equalled the weight of 11 double-decker buses at an estimated 130 tonnes and was the same length as two football pitches. Yuk!

What is a fatberg?

Nicknamed a fatberg, this physical monstrosity is a mixture of congealed fat, nappies and wet wipes that have been flushed down toilets and poured down drains by local residents and businesses. Mixed together, it forms the worst type of blockage you can ever imagine, and it’s threatening to force raw sewage all over the streets of London.

What measures are being taken?

Thames Water is hard at work during the evenings and at weekends gradually removing the hideous fatberg. Work has to be completed during these hours due to the street and road above the blockage being full of tourists and delivery vehicles during weekdays.

It’s not all bad news!    

The good news is once the disgusting fat has been removed from the sewer it can be processed at a recycling plant and turned into biodiesel. It’s a horrific job but at least something positive can come out of the whole sorry saga.

How could this have been prevented?

The most obvious way of preventing this type of incident from happing in the first place is to not pour oil, grease or fat down drains and never flush nappies or wipes down the toilet. At home, you can collect waste oil and take it local recycling centres, or as a business, you can have this waste collected by a provider of waste service solutions.

We specialise in the collection of hazardous waste here at Pure Clean Waste Solutions Ltd. If you need a waste management service in Manchester, Liverpool or Leeds, please contact us today or call to speak to us on 0161 430 1111.

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