Whirlwind idea to keep sewers clear

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An ingenious new invention has been tested by Yorkshire Water in Brighouse to keep the sewers clear this Christmas.

At the Calder Valley Incinerator, on Cooper Bridge Road, the company teamed up with Wrexham based Whirlwind Utilities in a bid to ensure that people’s Christmases aren’t spoiled by the reappearance of what went down the drain.

The plan is to clean sewers with a high-pressured mix of air and water – the first time this technique has been used anywhere in the world – in readiness for the festive season.

Ross Housley from Yorkshire Water urged customers to think twice about what they pour down the drain this winter.

“Reducing the number of blockages in our sewers is a massive job and as well as asking our customers to do their bit by thinking carefully about what they are putting down their sinks and toilets.

“Our message is simple: anything other than human waste and loo roll has no business in our sewers and we’d ask people to do the right thing and make sure they dispose of their rubbish in the correct way, rather than risk blocking our sewers and potentially flooding their own homes with sewage.”

The company says winter is the worst time of year for sewers being blocked by fats, oils and grease that people pour down the drain instead of putting in the bin.

In Yorkshire there were 22,000 blockages last year – nearly 6,000 of these over winter – which cost more than £8m to clear.