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Water Sector News

Hey, Louisville, quit flushing wipes down the toilet. You're backing up the sewer lines

Apr 6, 2020
https://www.courier-journal.com/story/news/2020/04/03/coronavirus-msd-says-wipes-being-flushed-has-backed-up-sewers/2943871001/

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A few weeks into citywide efforts to have residents stay home to slow the spread of the coronavirus, sewer lines are seeing more backups, mostly because of flushable wipes.

That's because flushable wipes aren't really flushable. Neither are dental floss, diapers and feminine hygiene products.

Under normal circumstances, Metropolitan Sewer District has eight or nine sewer backups each day, spokeswoman Sheryl Lauder said in an email.

Now, MSD is seeing about 14 or 15 backups each day. 

"We have to avoid making a bathroom no-no, which is flushing anything down the toilet that isn't toilet paper,"  MSD executive director Tony Parrott said during the mayor's daily briefing. 

The products marketed as flushable wipes are the most common cause of backups in the pumps and the more than 3,300 miles of sewer lines and isn't a new issue for MSD.

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