Yorkshire Water urges York businesses to dispose of fats correctly

A fat blockage under Lendal Bridge


Yorkshire Water is urging food-serving businesses in York to improve their grease management processes after two incidents where masses of fats, oils and grease have cause sewer blockages.

Both incidents led to sewage escaping the network and entering the river Ouse, at Lendal Bridge and at York’s Guildhall.

Miles Cameron, head of customer field services at Yorkshire Water, said: “These latest incidents show just how important it is food-serving businesses in the city take the correct action to prevent fats, oils and greases from entering the sewer. Ultimately, these can cause significant blockages in the network and result in potential damage to the environment.

“Our teams have worked hard to remove these blockages and clear the network of fats, which cool and solidify in the network if not cleared into bins or prevented by appropriate grease management. We are using camera technology within the sewer to trace the main sources of the fats and will take further action where necessary.

“Our network protection teams have also been working closely with businesses in the city to check their grease management plans and will be continuing to make regular visits to ensure the correct process are in place to try and prevent the incidents we’ve seen in recent months.

“We would encourage all food-serving establishments in the city to carefully consider their practices and ensure they have the correct measures in place to limit the amount of fats, oils and greases flowing down their sinks and through their dishwashers to protect the sewer network, and ultimately, the environment.”

An Environment Agency spokesperson said: “We are determined to improve the water quality of our rivers – which requires a combined effort from water companies, farmers, regulators, councils and local businesses. Individual actions count and small steps such as not pouring fats and oils down the sink or flushing wet wipes and other plastic products down the loo can go a long way to help protect water quality.”