Love your loo: Flush only paper, pee and poo
One of the most helpful things you can do is flush only toilet paper, pee and poo down your toilet.
Except for toilet paper, many products that are advertised as flushable cause problems in our sewers. Just because a product is branded as flushable, it doesn’t mean it should be flushed or that it’s safe to flush it. It usually means only that the product can go down your toilet bowl. What these products can’t do is break down quickly like toilet paper does. Instead, they get caught in our sewer pumps and create blockages.
Please dispose of the following products in your rubbish, not down your toilet:
- Wet wipes and sanitising wipes, including wipes advertised as biodegradable
- Tampons and sanitary pads
- Tissues and paper towels.
Our staff have to clear about five sewer pump blockages caused by people flushing these products down the toilet every week. It costs ratepayers about $30,000 every year.
Remember: Flush only the 3 Ps – paper, pee and poo!
Other ways you can help
Here are some other ways you can help:
- Minimise use during heavy rain - During periods of wet weather water can infiltrate the sewage network causing it to backup and overflow into backyards or on the road – this is an issue around the world. We ask that during periods of heavy rain – more than 30mm in the previous 12hours – that you put off doing the washing or have shorter showers during peak hours. Peak hours are: 6am-8:30am and 4:30pm-6:30pm on weekdays. On the weekends these periods tend to be a little later in the day. Council has an ongoing programme of sewage network renewals to help combat the problem.
- Don’t put fat down the drain - Fat poured down the drain is a major cause of blockages in sewage pipes – it can lead to overflows that can damage your property. Instead, set the fat aside and allow it to harden and then place it in your rubbish bag. Or, use a paper towel to soak it up and place them in your rubbish.
- Don’t flush medicines - It is an offence to flush medication down the toilet or throw them away in the rubbish. All pharmacies in Horowhenua are required to take back old medications which they return to the Mid Central District Health Board for appropriate and safe disposal – you can find out more on MidCentral District Health Board’s website. This includes medicines for pets.
My toilet is blocked – what do I do?
Any blockage that occurs on a private property is the responsibility of the owner. You might need a plumber or drainlayer to fix the issue, and any costs are the responsibility of the property owner. Council is responsible for any blockages in the Council's sewer main, which are usually found along the berm of a street or in the street. If you believe a blockage is Council’s responsibility, then please call 06 366 0999 or email firstname.lastname@example.org