South West Water removes mammoth fatberg from Plymouth sewer
South West Water has removed a massive build-up of hardened fat, oil and wet wipes the same length as the height of the Arc de Triomphe from a sewer in Plymouth.
The 50-metre fatberg, which was over a metre wide and a metre deep, was discovered in a sewer that feeds Edinburgh Street pumping station in Devonport at the end of last year.
The removal and clean-up of the fatberg was carried out by specialist contractors Clear-flow and took a team of four people 34 days to complete. This involved removing over 88 tonnes of debris.
South West Water’s Director of Wastewater Operations, Mark Hillson, said: “This is a serious reminder of the problems caused by products such as baby wipes, hygiene wipes, moist toilet tissues, cleaning wipes, cleansing pads and sanitary products, which don't break down in the same way that toilet paper does.
“Cooking oil, fat and grease disposed of down the sink can also build up and block pipes, particularly when mixed with these other materials.
“We would like to remind all our customers to only flush the 3Ps – pee, paper and poo – down the loo, and to not dispose of cooking fats, oils and greases down the sink.
“It took over a month to remove this monster in exceptionally challenging work conditions at a cost of nearly £100,000.”
Due to the volumes of wastewater even in dry weather conditions there was a need to use temporary overland pipes to divert flows from the sewer into the pump station so the blockage could be removed.
The debris at times was so compacted the team had to break it up with picks, crow bars and hammers, while the large lumps had to be removed in buckets by crane and taken to landfill.
- Yorkshire Water invests in latest CDEnviro solution Yorkshire Water has invested in the new MSU:10G portable screen for solid liquid separation from CDEnviro, making it the... Read More >
- North West's biggest plumbing job done on time, in a storm, despite Covid A team of 180 specialist engineers have pulled off the biggest plumbing job in the North West near Kendal despite severe... Read More >
- Suez brings satellite infrastructure intelligence product to the UK Suez has announced the launch of MasterPlan - the latest product from technology partner Utilis Corp - a deployable pipe... Read More >
- What exactly is the circular economy? The circular economy is being increasingly mentioned but what exactly is it and what does it mean? What is its relevance... Read More >
- Integrated sustainability analytics to support asset planning and investment Jiean Ling, doctoral practitioner in sustainability at the University of Surrey, discusses why the water sector needs an... Read More >
- Connecting Greece to the UK with NextGen circular developments A sewer mining project in Athens is testing augmented reality (AR) to drive public engagement. With a very high... Read More >
- The role of safe digging in the UK's economic recovery The UK government looks set to invest heavily in large scale infrastructure in a bid to try and kickstart the economy.... Read More >
- Meet the judges of the Water Industry Awards 2021 WWT chats to some of the judges of the 2021 WIAs, to find out what they are most excited about for this year's awards. Read More >