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Stop and Think – Not Down the Sink!

07 August 2013 10:39

A sewer heavily blocked with grease | NI Water News
Following the discovery of ‘Fatberg’, a 15 tonne accumulation of cooking fat and wet wipes in a sewer near London, NI Water is appealing to people in Northern Ireland to consider the effects of pouring fat, oil and grease down the sink, following the recent disposal of a substantial quantity into the sewerage system.

Jane Jackson, Environmental Education Manager at NI Water, said: “Cooking fat, oil and grease being washed down the drain is a very serious issue and is impacting upon the performance and process of the sewerage network. When fat, oil and grease solidifies in the sewers, it prevents wastewater flowing through the pipes creating blockages, resulting in sewer flooding on to the nearby streets and gardens.  

“Fat, oil and grease in its liquid form may not look harmful, but once in the drains causes immeasurable damage to the sewerage networks, pumps, valves and screening equipment. Even when hot water or soap is poured down the sink along with fats, oil and grease, damage will still occur.

“The deliberate disposal of fats, oils and grease into the sewerage networks impacts on resources that could be better used to improve services to the local community. We can all play a part in maintaining the sewerage infrastructure from restaurants, pubs and hotels right through to home owners and industrial outlets.”

One way to dispose of fat, oil and grease is to let it cool and solidify, and then scrape it into the rubbish bin, or alternatively it can be poured into a suitable container and taken to a Council Recycling Centre. Plates, pots, trays and utensils should be scraped before washing.

Additional information on disposing of fat, oil and grease and a booklet specifically for catering outlets can be found at

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