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Fatberg problem - Don't just throw it down the drain

This is what happens when fat is not disposed of properly

The water supplier Thames Water says it has finally found out why Oxford has such a big problem with 'fatbergs'.

When collating the results of a recent survey the firm found that around 80 percent of the city's restaurants were not using fat traps to stop oil and grease spilling into Oxford's sewers. Therefore, the fat collects in the sewer and drains below the city streets and creates the huge, solid deposits, otherwise known as fatbergs.

Earlier this year, a 20 tonne blockage was removed from one drain in the city centre. Kate Bunkall's report explains what happened. The interviewee is Alex Saunders from Thames Water.

Restaurant staff causing "fatbergs" plague

Lumps of hard, congealed fat can cause blockages in the sewer system Credit: PA

Restaurant staff in Oxford are causing a plague of "fatbergs" according to Thames Water.

The water company say 95% of food outlets in the city don't dispose of oil, fat and grease correctly. They are pouring it down the sink, causing more than twenty tonnes of waste to end up in Park End Street sewer each year.


Water problem fixed but may take a while to restore

Thames Water website states:

We're really sorry to customers who may be experiencing problems with their water supply.

This is due to a technical problem at our local booster station. We've now fixed the problem but it may take a short while for supplies to be fully restored.

We're sorry for any inconvenience caused.

– Thames Water website

Residents angry at the lack of water in Reading

26,000 homes affected by no water in Reading

26,000 properties in Reading are without water supply this morning due to a pump failure.

Thames Water say they are trying to fix the issue, which they believe is the same problem that happened last week.

Thousands were left without water and Reading University had to shut their campuses due to no water.

In the end, bottled water was handed out to residents.

Homes in Reading may have issues with water supply

Some homes in Reading are without water this morning due to a technical problem at Thames Water's booster station.

Their website states:

We're really sorry to customers who may be experiencing problems with their water supply.

This is due to a technical problem at our local booster station. Our technicians are en-route to the site to fix this and we'll restore supplies as quickly as possible.

We're sorry for an inconvenience caused.

– Thames Water website


Water supply restored to Thames Valley customers

Thames Water have restored water to areas in Reading who were left without water after a water main burst earlier today.

The water company successfully brought in water from other areas of Berkshire to supply customers in Reading who lost their water after a pump failed in Earley this morning.

Earlier today up to 26,000 properties were suffering from a lack of water or low water pressure, but by 4pm engineers had restored pressures to the pipe network.

We’re really sorry to everyone who has been inconvenienced today. Our teams have worked incredibly hard to bring water back to thousands of homes, and we genuinely appreciate the patience of our customers.

“We’d like to thank the University of Reading, ASDA at Lower Earley and the Showcase Cinema at Winnersh who have been extremely helpful in letting us use their carparks as depots and collection points for our bottled water.”

– Thames Water senior manager Rob Keen, in charge of the operation to restore water supplies

Thousands left without water after pump failure

Thousands of people in Reading have been left without water for much of the day and the town's university had to close one of its campuses due to the supply problems.

Thames Water said a faulty pump was to blame.

It's been distributing thousands of bottles to residents.

Mel Bloor has our report.

Interviewees: Thames Water customers Carol Munt and Lisa Pyner. Deputy Vice Chancellor of Reading University Prof Tony Downes and Mark Handcock from Thames Water.

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