7 Aug 2013

London sewer almost blocked by ball of fat

11:30 am on 7 August 2013

A 15-tonne ball of congealed food fat has been dredged from a sewer in London. It was the size of double-decker bus.

Thames Water crews took 10 days to remove the lump of food fat which was mixed with other waste, from beneath a road in Kingston, southwest London.

The company said it was the biggest lump of fat ever removed from the drains.

The ABC reports Images from inside the sewer show that the fat had reduced the drain to 5% of its normal capacity.

"We've never seen a single, congealed lump of lard this big clogging our sewers before," said waste contracts supervisor Gordon Hailwood.

"The sewer was almost completely clogged with over 15 tonnes of fat. If we hadn't discovered it in time, raw sewage could have started spurting out of manholes across the whole of Kingston."

Mr Hailwood said repairs to the sewer will take up to six weeks.