Many people put the wrong things down their sinks and toilets. This can result in blocked drains, which can cause problems for your household. In some places raw sewage is still dumped into rivers and oceans, causing unsightly pollution and problems for wildlife and if you're putting the wrong things in your drains then they can affect wildlife.
Yorkshire Water cleared 18 000 blocked drains last year (the population of Yorkshire is around 5.1 million). Around 37% of these blockages were probably preventable. The company is currently running a campaign to raise awareness of the issues. Although the campaign is aimed at their customers in Yorkshire, it offers very useful advice for everyone!
Their basic advice is:
* Don’t pour fat, oil or grease down the kitchen sink – small amounts of fat put down a sink can solidify in pipes like lard. Over time this fat builds up preventing waste water from escaping down the pipes to the sewers. This means it finds its way back up the pipes and could end up coming out of toilets and sinks.
* Waste oils and fat can be made into fat cakes to feed birds in your garden. You can find out more here and if you are a Yorkshire Water customer you can order free fat cake making kits (and see below for a chance to get your hands on some free fat cake making kits even if you don't live in Yorkshire)!
* Don’t flush wipes, sanitary products, cotton buds, nappies, hair. Toilets are only designed to remove toilet roll and human waste. Anything else can cause your toilet to become blocked. If waste cannot escape to the sewers, it could come back up through the toilet resulting in a nasty flooded bathroom.
* Put sanitary products etc in a bin.
You can read more about the Dos and Don'ts here and if you are a new parent, there is an interesting infographic about babies and nappy waste here.
Yorkshire Water have kindly offered me some fat cake making kits to give away to readers of this blog. All you need to do is leave a comment within the next week on this post here or on Facebook or Twitter (or retweet the post on Twitter)! Ten people will receive two fat cake making kits each. These can be sent anywhere in the world, but preference may be given to people in the UK, who are not Yorkshire Water customers.