Water Industry News

100 Tonnes Of Unflushable Debris Discovered In Sewer

Although it is common knowledge that only paper and human waste should be flushed down the drain, it seems that there are many out there ignoring this requirement, with Anglian Water discovering approximately 100 tonnes of unflushable debris in part of its sewer network during a refurbishment project.


Items discovered during the refurbishment work included bricks, large rocks and numerous crowbars. The scheme itself is the first in the company’s upgrade programme in Peterborough to help maintain the sewer network, prolonging the life of existing sewers while protecting the local environment.


The £1.3 million project began in September and has now been completed, with the work involving refurbishing the entire length of the sewer in the area to protect the environment and reduce the risk of burst pipes.


Overall, Anglian Water intends to invest £27 million throughout Peterborough over the next two years to improve its sewer network, as well as installing nearly 100,000 upgraded water meters and reducing flood risks through the installation of sustainable drainage solutions.


The water recycling centre at Flag Fen is also going to receive a £16 million upgrade to help it support the expanding city in the future, while work is also going to be carried out on the water recycling network in Marlborough and Yaxley in 2022.


Anglian Water’s Nicola Harvey said: “Putting anything other than the 3 Ps (Pee, Poo and Paper) down into the sewer can not only damage the pipes but can have a devastating impact on the local environment should the sewer become blocked.


“Peterborough is one of the fastest growing cities in the UK. It is essential for us to ensure our network is running smoothly, which is why we are investing in the area to ensure our pipes are working as they should.


“Sewer rehabilitations such as the work undertaken on Thorpe Road will ensure the infrastructure can continue to run without the risk to the environment, but we would ask our customers to do their bit to help protect them too.”


Back in October, Anglian Water revealed that nearly 3,000 tonnes of unflushable items were wrongly disposed of by people across the east of England over the last 12 months, putting the region’s environment at risk.


The rubbish found across the network included disposable face masks, wet wipes, sanitary items, nappies and cotton buds, weighing the equivalent of around 30 blue whales!


Unblocktober is the first awareness month in the world designed to fight fatbergs and help prevent plastic pollution. Each year, Anglian Water clears more than 40,000 blockages caused by wrongly flushed items, as well as a buildup of grease, fats and oils. This works out as one blockage every five minutes, 80 per cent of which are actually avoidable.


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