(Above: Photo of a Fatberg – source: Wikipedia)
How is a fatberg formed and why do they cause so much disruption to the sewerage system?
A fatberg is a nasty piece of work. It is the accumulation of fat that has built up inside a sewer. This is caused by the flushing of vegetable and animal fats, sanitary items, and wet wipes. Whereas bog-standard toilet paper can break down, wet wipes and sanitary items cannot. If you flushed a bit of vegetable oil down the sink, it will create an iceberg style clump of fat, floating in the sewer itself. Instead of polar bears, you get rats, the odd cotton bud and the remains of one’s takeaway.