Q: What do superhero costumes, nappies, and cooking oil have in common?

A: They’re all items discovered recently in Carterton’s wastewater system, and we really wish they hadn’t.

The costume, a child’s Batman getup, and the nappies can jam pump stations in the network, the aerators at the wastewater treatment plant, and other machinery.

In recent weeks, pump stations have been getting blocked up by wet wipes and similar items.

It is important to be mindful of the damage to our infrastructure that can be caused by flushing non bio-degradable items away, said Rachel Round, Consents, Compliance and Operations Manager at Carterton District Council, also please note that “flushable” wipes are not “flushable”, they do not break down.

“Please remember the three Ps. If it’s not pee, paper or poo, do not flush it down the loo. Anything else blocks our systems and takes away key staff from essential work. No wipes down the pipes, please!”

“We kindly ask that all community members refrain from disposing of these items down the sink or toilet. Instead, nappies and wet wipes should be disposed of in the garbage, and clothing and other non-flushable items should be recycled or disposed of in designated bins.”


Kitchen waste also causing problems

Managing waste is not only an issue for the bathroom

Kitchen and cooking by products like fats, oils and grease also threaten the environment, an oil is the glue that creates fatbergs, these turn into big lumps that jam up the pipework.

Grease and oils poured down your sink slide through your pipes and meet up with other greasy conglomerates, fabrics, and single-use plastic items that have been flushed down the toilet. Over time, these items build up, creating a fatberg.

We ask that you avoid draining oils and fats into the wastewater system.

“You help the network and the environment by cooling and collecting your cooking fats, oil and grease in a covered container and put them in a rubbish bin. You can dispose of cooking oils at our transfer station.

“Scrape pots and pans into your rubbish bin before rinsing and washing, and add a strainer to your sink to catch food scraps and other solids that can collect with any fats and create a blockage.

“And certainly, I’m sure our local op-shops and reuse centres would be happy to take any used superhero outfits from you!”


Find out more

You can get more information about the network and get advice on this website’s wastewater section.