'Monster' fatberg found blocking London sewer

Andrew Cummings
September 13, 2017

The last huge fatberg, which was Britain's biggest until now, was discovered in Kingston-upon-Thames, south west London, in 2013.

Engineers are working round the clock to clear London's biggest ever fatberg which is as long as more than two Wembley pitches.

Fatbergs are the result of millions of homes and restaurants ignoring advice not to pour cooking oil down drains and not to flush wet wipes and nappies down toilets.

Thames Water who are in charge of unblocking it say it's one of the biggest they've ever seen.


Thames Water's Matt Rimmer said the fatberg was "a total monster and taking a lot of manpower and machinery to remove as it's set hard".

"It's basically like trying to break up concrete".

It's a long one too, with water experts saying it's around 250 metres in length, and should weigh something in the region of 130 tonnes once fully. sucked out.

Inspections by CCTV showed that the sewer, which is 47 inches high and 27.6 inches wide is blocked by the fatberg. Work is continuing for the next three weeks until the sewer is clear.


The company will send eight workers to break up the fatberg, which weighs the same as 11 double-decker buses. Parking bays have had to be cordon off while engineers get access to the sewer beneath the surface.

"Let's be clever, remove them, and then do something good for the environment", Simon Brum, strategic recycling manager at Thames Water, said in a news release earlier this year. "Often we have to shut roads entirely, which can cause widespread disruption, especially in London".

The utility company launched a "bin it, don't block it" campaign on Monday to encourage households to properly dispose of items which contribute to blockages such as nappies, wet wipes and condoms.

The Guardian also reports that Thames Water is looking into putting fatbergs to use-transforming them into biodiesel to power buses, for example.


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