Upstate residents are flushing more wet wipes, causing blockages in sewer systems

Apr 16, 2021

UPSTATE, S.C. (WSPA) – Wipes have always been a huge problem for sewage systems across the Upstate. Wastewater treatment technicians in Greenville were already removing clogs caused by heaps of non-flushable materials getting entangled in water pumps in the sewer system. However, officials told 7 News they’ve seen these blockages worsen over the course of the pandemic.

According to Toby Humphries, collections and maintenance manager at Renewable Water Resources (ReWa) in Greenville, a large amount of these blockages are caused by residents flushing wet wipes down their toilets during the pandemic.

“I think when we had the toilet paper shortage people migrated towards diaper wipes, which are convenient but just because it says it’s flushable doesn’t mean it should be flushed,” Humphries said.

From March 2020 until now, ReWa technicians have manually removed 195 blockages caused by wet wipes from water pumps at their wastewater treatment lift stations.

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