Urgent Ugu plea to residents regarding the blocking of sewer system with fat, oil, grease or debris

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PRESS RELEASE BY UGU DISTRICT MUNICIPALITY:

Help us keep our sewer systems clean and free from F.O.G

Protecting Public Health and ensuring that everyone has a right to a clean and safe environment is the prime responsibility of the Ugu District Municipality. Sewer blockages are usually caused by an accumulation of fats, oil and grease (F.O.G) and debris (e.g. rags etc).

Blockages reduce capacity in the sewer lines and result in sewage spills into the streets, private property and water courses. F.O.G is a combination of fats, oils and grease used in food processing and in preparation of meals. When waste F.O.G is discharged down the drains and into the sewer system, it cools and solidifies restricting or clogging the waste water flow.

The Ugu District Municipality is inundated with complaints in respect of blocked manholes and one of the contributing factors is the disposal of FOG into our sewer system. Households, Commercial and Industrial premises are responsible for such blockages. F.O.G both from households and food outlets are entering the sewer system in liquid form, but when it comes in contact with the cold pipes underground, the fats/grease hardens on the walls of the sewer lines. A popular myth is that running hot water down the drain will prevent this from occurring, however this is not true, as the ground surrounding the pipes keeps it cool, thereby allowing the fat to adhere to the walls of the pipes. Over a period of time, the fat will harden in the pipes, eventually causing the pipe to become completely blocked, or resulting in fat deposits causing blockages.

The recurrence of these blockages poses a major health risk as sewage enters recreational waters ultimately resulting in closures of beaches and lagoons for water sports. The blockages also result in unpleasant odours and the risk of pests infestation.  The public can play a pivotal role in minimizing blockages if FOG is correctly managed and disposed of.

F.O.G is Fats Oils and Grease

MINIMIZE YOUR F.O.G BY FOLLOWING THESE SIMPLE STEPS

  1. Do not pour liquid fats, oils or grease into sinks and floor drains. These should be poured into non-recyclable packages and disposed of in refuse bins.

2. Ensure that all fats that solidify is collected and disposed of in refuse bins

3. Dishes, pots and pans that are coated with greasy leftovers should be wiped clean with a disposable              towel prior to washing or placement in dishwashers.

4.Instead of allowing fat trimmings or food pieces to enter the waste water drainage system, use                        strainers in sink plug holes and dispose any collected food debris in refuse bins.

5. Consider fitting a fat/grease trap and ensure it is regularly maintained.

6.  All food outlets are to be equipped with grease/fat traps which must be maintained regularly. A documented grease/fat trap maintenance plan must be in place.

7. Persons handling F.O.G must be sensitised on the correct and safe disposal of F.O.G

REMEMBER THAT EVEN A SMALL AMOUNT OF F.O.G IN SINK DRAINS CAN CAUSE SEWAGE BACKUPS AND OVERFLOWS THAT ARE MESSY, COSTLY AND A POTENTIAL THREAT TO YOUR HEALTH AND THE ENVIRONMENT

The Municipality promotes working together to create an environment that is friendly responsive, accountable, effective and efficient for local communities.

ISSUED BY:

UGU DISTRICT MUNICIPALITY

For more information and media queries contact:

Senior Manager: Mayoralty and Communications

Mr France Zama                        

France.Zama@ugu.gov.za

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