Well the first obvious step is to know your enemy. Fatberg is a term coined in the past 15 years by municipal wastewater workers in London for the gigantic congealed lumps of food fat and wet wipes clogging the drains under their city.
The name caught on around the world as these pipe-blocking blobs grew in frequency and size – most notably in the U.S. and the U.K. where a “perfect storm” – lots of fatberg ingredients and aging sewer systems – combined to cause bigger and bigger problems.
In 2013, a fatberg the size of a double-decker bus and as solid as concrete made front page news in London, and this year city workers discovered another one – 10 times the size of the original!
Meanwhile, in the U.S., New York City spent nearly $20 million in recent years combating fatbergs, and Baltimore was blindsided this year by a fatberg-generated sanitary sewage overflow (SSO) that sent more than 1 million gallons of sewer water into a nearby stream.
There’s no mystery about what’s causing these sewage system monsters to flourish: It all comes down to flushability. More and more clog-causing products and materials are being flushed and dumped into drains than ever before – choking the pumps and pipes that run our municipal wastewater systems.
It’s tough to teach people what they can and can’t flush down the drain. Just look at what’s going on right now in Washington D.C. where a baby wipe manufacturer is suing over a new city law regulating that its product can’t be labeled “flushable.”
But if you know the top five trouble-makers, you can equip yourself to avoid unscheduled maintenance, costly downtime, serious sanitary sewer overflows (SSOs) – and steer clear of the causes of fatbergs in your city or town.
New wastewater pump technologies can you help you tackle these system-clogging hazards head on. At Xylem, we have pump technology that’s up to any challenge. Our Godwin NC150S Dri-Prime® Pump, equipped with our unique Flygt N-technology non-clog impeller, can handle the most harmful pump-clogging materials that shut other pumps down.
Learn what you are up against by downloading our infographic of the five worst modern wastewater system-clogging villains. Then call your local Xylem pump expert and schedule a demo to see how our NC150S Dri-Prime pump is a powerful weapon in your fight against these flushable foes.