Campaign to Preserve Sewer Lines in Fort Bend County

Sewer systems that become clogged or damaged can become an expensive concern for municipalities across the USA. Utility providers and residents of Fort Bend are on high alert after reports of mammoth fatbergs being removed from the sewer lines of a number of cities across the country began surfacing. As the largest city in the county, Sugar Land faces the greatest risk of a build-up of gunk wreaking havoc with the city’s sewer lines.

In order to limit the need for expensive and time-consuming cleaning and repair operations, the Interstate Municipal Utility District has launched an educational campaign in November last year aimed at keeping Katy and the rest of the region’s sewer lines healthy.

Be mindful of what you flush

Although wastewater systems are designed to handle human waste, people have been flushing other things down the drain for as long as drains have been in existence. According to Chris Townsend, Account Manager of local utility provider Inframark, the list of unsuitable things that gets disposed of via drainpipes and toilets continues to grow. Some of the biggest offenders include paper towels, feminine hygiene products, condoms, and cotton swabs. Wipes are a particularly large cause for concern as they are made from very robust fibers that are not going to simply disintegrate in water.

It’s not just a residential concern

While a lot of the gunk found in the sewer lines underneath Sugar Land and other towns and cities in the county originate in residential homes, the business sector is just as guilty of inappropriate disposal habits. When industry-derived fats, oils, and grease join the rest of the not-so-biodegradable items in the sewer pipes, gigantic clumps of waste matter,known as fatbergs, can form. Regular maintenance is required to ensure any potential concerns do not go unnoticed. Industry specialists SPI Borescopes reiterate the importance of regular pipe inspection to decrease the risk of sewage build-ups and potential leaks.

Sewer blockages are a costly affair

Removing build-up from sewer lines and repairing damage takes time and costs money. The pumps that lift water into a wastewater treatment plant alone cost anywhere between $2,500 and $25,000 to replace. While this may seem like it is of no consequence to home and business owners, it does have an impact on the utility bills of all property owners as utility providers need to recover a portion of the costs. The sole purpose of the campaign, which was launched in November, was to relay a vital message: it’s a toilet, not a trash can. Apart from adverts in local newspapers and informative blogs on the MUD website, door tags were also hung on apartments in an effort to relay the message to as many people as possible.

Clogged sewer lines can post huge problems to towns and cities. It is therefore of the utmost importance to never use your toilets or drain pipes as a trashcan.