BRIDGEWATER — Town Manager Michael Dutton and Bridgewater Water & Sewer Superintendent Jonas Kazlauskas would like to remind residents to avoid flushing non-flushable items down the toilet while many residents are at home while social distancing efforts are in effect throughout the state.
A properly functioning sewer system is extremely important for the protection of public health and helps to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
To help keep these systems functioning properly, the Bridgewater Sewer Department is reminding people that the following products should not be flushed:
- Baby wipes, cleaning wipes, hand sanitizing (even “flushable” wipes)
- Paper towels
- Dental Floss
- Tampons and sanitary products
- Cotton balls and swabs
- Cat litter
- Prescription drugs
- Over-the-counter medicines
- Cigarette butts
Unlike toilet paper, these products do not break down and once flushed they are likely to clog the plumbing in your house, in your septic system or in the public sewer system.
When these products make their way into the public sewer system they clump together, causing very large obstructions in the sewer lines. They get tangled in pump stations requiring repair of equipment and causing backups and discharges of raw sewage into basements of homes and businesses, and into waters of the state.
“With schools already closed and with Governor Baker’s announcement of the closure of all non-essential businesses yesterday, a lot more people are going to be inside their homes throughout the day and night, using their toilets and water systems,” Kazlauskas said. “It is imperative that residents be mindful of what is going down their drains so that we can keep the water supply clean and functioning properly. Wipes of any kind should never go down your drains.”
Due to the potential for public works staffing shortages during the COVID-19 pandemic, response time to repair clogged sewers could be substantially delayed.
Therefore, in order to protect our wastewater treatment facilities, Town officials remind everyone to make sure they are only flushing toilet paper and properly disposing of all other materials.
For additional information, contact the Bridgewater Wastewater Treatment Facility at 508-697-0937.