This is how many tonnes of wet wipes were removed after Cross Green flooding

A pile of wet wipes sucked out from the sewers in Cross Green.
A pile of wet wipes sucked out from the sewers in Cross Green.
0
Have your say

This is just some of the six tonnes of wet wipes and other debris that has been removed from sewers in Cross Green.

Yorkshire Water were called out to the junction of Knowsthorpe Lane and Cross Green Approach on Wednesday (6) after the sewers overflowed, forcing passengers to get out and abandon their cars.

The flooding in Cross Green on Wednesday (6). (Photo: Emilie Kozel).

The flooding in Cross Green on Wednesday (6). (Photo: Emilie Kozel).

It was down to a large ball of wet wipes and concrete. Around 600 metres of sewer has now been cleared using a tanker and the Yorkshire Water team are expected to be there until the end of this week.

Nine tonnes of debris were also removed from the area in January.

There are two concrete companies and one road surfacing company above the sewers and lots of residential sewage ends up in the area on its way to the Knostrop Treatment Works.

Lee Pinder, south network service manager at Yorkshire Water, said: “ We remove the liquid, which then goes to the treatment works just down road at Knostrop. Then solids that we have - the rags, the wipes - go to landfill.

Some of the Yorkshire Water team in Cross Green.

Some of the Yorkshire Water team in Cross Green.

“We’re looking at local traders in the area to understand how the debris is getting into the sewers.”

Matt Diner, from Yorkshire Water, said a large part of the problem was people throwing wet wipes down the toilet. Wipes labelled as flushable are actually not suitable for flushing down the loo.

“When they describe things as flushable they mean they disappear down the u-bend. But the reality is there plastic in there it doesn't break down.”

Other hotspots in Leeds include the LS7 and LS8 postcodes - two of the worse offending hotspots in the country - which is partly down to high population density.

In the past Harrogate has proved a problem area due to the thickness of the toilet roll used in the area.

Yorkshire Water are currently running a campaign highlighting the problems with flushing away wet wipes. Cooking fat should also not be thrown down the sink - instead it should be put into jars and thrown away or used as part of a bird feeder.

Forty per cent of blockages are caused by wet wipes and it costs Yorkshire Water £2.4m to remove blockages.

“Only poo, pee and paper should go down the loo,” Mr Diner added.

But wet wipes aren’t the only things that end up in the sewer system, either through fly-tipping of flushing down the loo.

“We see mattresses, car engines, trolleys and a lot of mobile phones,” Mr Pinder said. “Customers have even called us saying they have lost their false teeth.”