‘Flushable’ personal wipes clogging sewer systems, utilities say

September 7, 2013
Washington Post

Next time you go to toss that “flushable” wipe in the toilet, you might want to consider a request from your sewer utility: Don’t.

Sewer agencies in the Washington area and across the country say the rapidly growing use of pre-moistened “personal” wipes — used most often by potty-training toddlers and people seeking what’s advertised as a more “thorough” cleaning than toilet paper — are clogging pipes and jamming pumps.

Utilities struggling with aging infrastructure have wrestled for years with the problem of “ragging” — when baby wipes, dental floss , paper towels and other items not designed for flushing entangle sewer pumps.

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