Don't dump 'ovens, sheep heads, chairs' in Cape Town sewers - municipality

2018-07-22 13:43
Common causes of blockages include rags, nappies, tampons and sanitary pads, wet wipes, condoms, general litter, building materials and the build-up of cooking fat or oil. (Supplied)

Common causes of blockages include rags, nappies, tampons and sanitary pads, wet wipes, condoms, general litter, building materials and the build-up of cooking fat or oil. (Supplied)

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The City of Cape Town on Sunday urged residents not to put inappropriate material into the sewerage system as blockages and overflows continue to rise.

"Ovens, sheep heads, garden chairs, tyres, cloth, car engines, lawnmowers, nappies and rope," were among some of the items listed as not to be dumped into sewers.

"The number of reported blockages and overflows has steadily risen over the previous two years, from an average of 293 per day in the 2015/16 year, to an average of 330 per day in the 2017/18 financial year," mayoral committee member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services, and Energy, Xanthea Limberg, said in the statement.

She said while the drought and water restrictions would have also contributed to the increase, abuse of the sewerage system still remained the primary cause.

At the moment, it is costing approximately R170m a year to remove the blockages and fix overflows.

Report missing manhole covers

"The sewer reticulation system is only geared to accept toilet waste (urine, faeces, and toilet paper) and sink/basin/bath waste (water, washing liquid and soap)," she explained.

In terms of household usage, rags, nappies, tampons, sanitary pads, wet wipes and condoms could not be flushed down the toilet.

When it comes to cooking oils and fat: "When these substances are poured or flushed down your sink or drain, they harden and build up on the inside of the sewer pipes and act like glue, attracting rags, hair, paper and other debris," she said.

It was recommended that residents rather let grease cool and harden in the pan and then be scraped off and thrown away as litter.

Furthermore, residents should ensure that stormwater was not being drained into sewerage pipes as this caused overflows.

In addition, the City called on residents to report any missing or stolen sewer manhole covers "as they can act like a magnet for illegal dumping and litter".

Read more on:    city of cape town  |  cape town  |  sanitation  |  service delivery

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