‘Flushable’ wipes clogging up sewer system in Elyria; residents told to throw them away instead

May 14, 2019

ELYRIA, Ohio -- Elyria officials are working to rid their sewers of "flushable" wipes once and for all.

They may seem harmless, but they can actually cause a lot of damage.

According to Wastewater Superintendent Terry Korzan. the wipes attract grease, which then form clumps in the pipes and pumps.

"As the wipes get down to the pumps they get down to the impellers of the pump and stop it form rotating that will send a signal to the plant because the motor and the pump will start to overheat because it's still trying to turn but it can't," Korzan explained.

He said they've dealt with some major clogs, including one that was about the width of a basketball ball and stretched several feet inside a ten inch pipe.

He said when the pumps stop working, it slows down the process of moving and delivering waste water to the processing facility. It also wastes worker's time.

"What this amounts to is we're getting alarms at the pump stations and they'll  be over on this side of town they get an alarm from a pump station across town then they'll have to go over there take that apart take the wipes out get it back going and continue with what they're doing for the day." Korzan said.

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