ROCKWALL, TEXAS – March 17, 2020 – Recent events have caused a temporary shortage of toilet paper, which has led to an increase in the sales of flushable wipes and other alternative paper products. These flushable wipes and alternative paper products pose a serious risk to the City’s sanitary sewer system. The massive clog in the picture below was removed from a lift station that pumps wastewater to one of the treatment plants. The blockage is made up of about 80% flushable wipes combined with twigs, sticks, a plastic soda bottle, feminine hygiene products, and even a pair of underwear.
Clogs like these are far too frequent across the City’s sewer system and can have detrimental effects to the health of the sanitary sewer system. These require the City’s wastewater crews to shut down the pumps and manually remove the blockages in order to prevent wastewater from backing up into houses, businesses, and the environment. Removing these blockages can be not only time consuming, but costly to the City. Items like flushable wipes, paper towels, cotton swabs, hair, trash, debris, and hygiene products can get hung up in the system and cause these blockages. The City of Rockwall requests that citizens be mindful of the items that are being flushed.
Here are a few things that are NOT FLUSHABLE:
· “Flushable” wipes
· Trash and debris
· Paper towels
· Cotton swabs
· Wipes of any kind
· Hygiene products