A huge 130-tonne ‘fatberg’ weighing more than ten double-decker buses has been cleared from an underground sewer in an epic operation that took NINE WEEKS.
The congealed mass of fat, oil, wet-wipes and other sanitary products was lodged in a sewer four metres underground below Whitechapel in east London.
Thames Water staff spent weeks battling to clear the fatberg from the one-metre tall sewer – having to ditch machinery for hand shovels on the final stretch.
Thames Water has released photos of the giant mass to remind people that ‘poo, pee and toilet paper’ are the only things they should flush down toilets.
The company, which spends about £1million clearing blockages from its network of sewers, says customers suffer a blockage every hour because of unsuitable materials being flushed down toilets or tipped in drains.
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Waste network manager Alex Saunders said: “Our work is finished, and the beast finally defeated after a mammoth effort from the team.
“It was some of the most gut-wrenching work many would have seen on national television, and one of the reasons why the man-made Whitechapel fatberg captured the world’s imagination.”
Alex added: “The good news is it has helped Thames Water and other water companies around the world get the message across that cooking fat, oils and grease should never go down the plughole.
“As you have seen, when combined with wet wipes, sanitary products, underwear, nappies, and anything else that shouldn’t be flushed, we’re faced with having to clear out these giant, rock-hard fatbergs.”