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Toilet paper shortages causes blockages in sewerage systems

by Tracey Burkholder (2020-04-19)


remodels https://Www.Facebook.com/jmkplumbingllc; Toilet paper shortage has led to supermarket brawls and the abuse of retail staff but now hoarding has been blamed for an increase in blockages in sewage systems.

Sydney Water recorded a 22 per cent increase in blockages in March as people are resorting to alternatives.

As toilet paper is no longer available on shelves people are choosing to use wet wipes, facial tissues, paper towels and other items.

'The build-up of wet wipes, facial tissues and paper towels along with fats, oils and grease which people pour down the drain can cause blockages and what we call fatbergs which can result in overflows into local waterways and homes,' spokesman Darren Cash said in a statement on Wednesday. 








Toilet paper has been flying off shelves and supermarkets are often left without any as people are stockpiling due to fears of the spread of the coronavirus (Pictured: Woman picking up toilet paper in Marrickville in Sydney's inner west)


'Even though wet wipes might state they are flushable on their packaging, the reality is that they don't break down.'

Toilet paper has been flying off shelves and supermarkets are often left without any as people are stockpiling due to fears of the spread of the coronavirus. 

Mr Cash said while many believe facial tissues can be flushed down the toilet, they also do not break down.  

Sydney Water estimates up to 75 per cent of wastewater blockages involve wet wipes marketed as flushable.






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'Fatbergs' costs ratepayers upwards of $8 million each year.

A fatberg is a congealed mass in a sewer system which is formed by the combination of non-biodegradeable items.  

But ratepayers don't foot the bill alone. Irresponsible flushing can have a huge financial toll on homeowners as well.

'One Sydney resident had a plumbing bill of $16,000 to repair a problem caused by flushing wet wipes,' Mr Cash said.






Toilet paper shortage has led to supermarket brawls and the abuse of retail staff but now hoarding has been blamed for an increase in blockages in sewage systems (a blockage of wipes found by TasWater)


TasWater has also reported an increase in blockages, posting to Facebook on Tuesday an image of a sewer overflow.

'A crew attended and retrieved this small build-up of wipes,' TasWater wrote.

'The pressure was too intense to retrieve the remaining amount, a much larger one is headed to the pump station to cause havoc, a crew is ready to respond.'

If residents have to use alternatives to loo roll they should be placed in a bin.

'Our customers should remember only the three Ps can be flushed down your toilet - pee, poo and (toilet) paper,' Mr Cash said. 



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