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Council warns – Watch what you flush

Published: 2 May 2017

Council warns – Watch what you flush

A new public awareness campaign designed to protect Logan’s wastewater network and the environment has been launched today by Logan City Council.

Roads and Water Infrastructure Committee Chairman Councillor Phil Pidgeon said through a series of videos the Don’t Rush to Flush Campaign would graphically reveal what happened when unwanted material was disposed of within in the city’s pipes and drains.

“We especially want to save residents from unwanted repair bills on their properties,” Cr Pidgeon said.

“In recent years throughout the world people have become more aware of what happens to the things we flush down toilets and tip down sinks.

“The most graphic illustration of the problem is a fatberg, which is a congealed lump of non-biodegradable products such as fat, sanitary items and wet wipes found in sewer systems.

“Authorities throughout the world have been doing battle with fatbergs, with one weighing almost 100 tonnes discovered in a London sewer under a major road in 2014.

“Weighing around the same as 10 double decker buses, the Manchester fatberg took workers over a week to dislodge.

“We want the community to work with Council to ensure we don’t end up in a similar position.”

Cr Pidgeon said Logan’s Don’t Rush to Flush campaign was designed to educate the community about what items could be flushed down the toilet or washed down the sink.

“Disposing of unwanted items down toilets, sinks and wastewater pipes can result in homeowners incurring expensive plumbing bills to unblock wastewater pipes on their property.

“Municipal sewerage systems are primarily designed to collect and treat biodegradable sewage from domestic premises.

“Correct disposal methods also reduces unnecessary damage to Council’s wastewater network and the environment.”

So-called “flushable wipes” are estimated to be responsible for 75 per cent of all blockages.

The Australian Consumer and Competition Commission is investigating a complaint by consumer group Choice which is campaigning for these products to be removed from supermarket shelves.

Cr Pidgeon said the problem with these wipes is they were not biodegradable while toilet paper broke down almost immediately when flushed.

Independent tests undertaken by Choice have revealed the wet wipes do not break down in any way during a 21-hour testing period.

Logan’s Don’t Rush to Flush campaign will be delivered through three short informational videos which will air on social media and Council’s website.

The first of the videos can be accessed via:

www.dontrushtoflush.com.au