A monstrous rock solid pile of garbage, longer than six double-decker buses joined together, has been found in a British sewer with experts warning it could take eight weeks to remove.
The 64 metre long “fatberg”, made up of fat, wet wipes and grease, was formed by locals pouring household waste down their sink and toilets, wreaking havoc on the sewage system.
South West Water made the grotesque discovery under the British seaside town of Sidmouth, southwest of Devon and on Wednesday morning (Australian time) labelled it the region’s largest ever fatberg discovery.
“It’s a whopping 64 metres long; that’s over six double-decker buses back to back,” it said, posting two photographs of the grey “fatberg” filling most of the brick and concrete sewer.
At 64 metres, it is also longer than the height of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, longer than a Boeing 747SP, and more than twice as long as a tennis court, BBC reported.
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A local wildlife photographer says he has collectively found almost 600 wet wipes and an array of cotton buds, tampon applicators and pregnancy test kits on the River Orwell near Ipswich, since March last year.
South West Water urged local residents to “think sink” and “love your loo”.
“Don’t pour cooking oil, fat and grease down the sink [and] only flush the #3Ps – pee, paper and poo,” it tweeted.
Andrew Roantree, the firm’s director of wastewater, said the fatberg was discovered “in good time” and posed “no risk” to the quality of sea bathing waters.
He said he expected engineers to need about eight weeks to “dissect this monster in exceptionally challenging work conditions”.
They will start work on February 4, wearing breathing apparatus to remove the fatberg manually and with “special sewer jetting equipment”, the company said.
A much larger fatberg, stretching about 250 metres, blocked a sewer in east London’s Whitechapel district in 2017. Part of it was exhibited at the Museum of London last year.
Roantree said the Sidmouth fatberg showed “how this key environmental issue is not just facing the UK’s cities, but right here in our coastal towns”.
Sidmouth is a holiday resort known for its sandy beaches.