The facts about fatbergs

What is a fatberg?

A fatberg is a solid mass found in the underground sewer pipes formed by the combination of non-biodegradable products, such as wet wipes, and congealed cooking oil, fat or grease. They smell rancid and they're very difficult to break down and remove.

Why do fatbergs cause problems?

Fatbergs create blockages in the sewer network and prevent the flow of dirty wastewater or sewage to our treatment works. Unfortunately, fatbergs can cause sewer flooding in the streets, homes and gardens and pollution to the local environment. This is why we want to prevent fatbergs from forming in the first place.

How do we deal with fatbergs?

When we find a fatberg, we have to break it down using high pressure water jets. The lumps of fatberg can then be removed from the sewer network and disposed of responsibly. Or sometimes we can move the fatberg through the sewers to our treatment works for safe disposal. Removing fatbergs and repairing any damage to the network of underground pipes is costly and can take a long time.

Can fatbergs be recycled?

No. Fatbergs typically have to be disposed of at landfill sites due to the contamination with non-biodegradable products, such as wet wipes.

Help us fight the fatbergs!

Wet wipes and cooking oil and fats are the two key culprits that create fatbergs, can you help us to fight the fatbergs?

Remember to only flush the 3Ps; Pee, Poo, (toilet) Paper.

Don't flush any toiletry products down the loo, eg wet wipes, cotton wool pads, ear buds. Put them in the bin instead.

Don't pour cooking oils, fats or grease down the kitchen sink. After cooking, allow it to cool and scrape into the bin.

Monster found in Liverpool sewer!

The North West's biggest ever fatberg has been discovered deep underground in a sewer in Liverpool.

Measuring a whopping 250 metres, this sewer monster is formed from a congealed mass of fats, grease, oil, wet wipes, sanitary products, and other products that shouldn’t have been poured down the sink or flushed down the loo.

Stop the Block!

​Find out more about what you can and can’t put down the drains to stop fatbergs from forming.

Click the button below for more details

Find out more