Recent complications compel Portland Water District to urge public sewer customers to only flush human waste and toilet paper


This February the Portland Water District would like to remind customers

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Please only flush
Pee, paper, and poo

Recently, the Portland Water District has been responding to an increase in materials plugging pumps and causing system failures at our wastewater pump stations.  For the health of our environment, the public, and wastewater workers, we’d like to remind everyone to please only flush toilet paper and human waste.  Don’t flush wipes, they clog pipes and plug pumps.

On Saturday night crews responded to alarms at a pump station in Cape Elizabeth.  Both pumps at the station were clogged with wipes and dental floss, and wastewater had begun to overflow out of the pump station and onto the ground.  Crews spent the night pulling out wipes from one pump, cleaning up the damage, and getting the station back up and working.  Monday they unclogged the second pump. 

Last week, a similar situation had crews responding to another clogged pump station in Gorham. This one was caused by DENTAL FLOSS that was wound up in the pump.  Dental floss is strong and can easily bind with other materials to bring pumps to a screeching standstill. 

Not only do clogged pumps create unnecessary expenses, they also can have a negative impact on the environment and expose workers to dangerous situations.

Photo Caption:  Cape Elizabeth pump clogged with wipes and dental floss.


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