Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Giant fatbergs removed from St Andrews sewer

Logies Lane Image copyright Scottish Water
Image caption A fatberg was almost completely blocking the sewer in Logies Lane in St Andrews

More than 20 tonnes of fat have been removed from sewers in Fife.

It comes as part of a Scottish Water project to reduce the amount of fats, oils and grease being put into the sewer network in St Andrews.

The project, which involves businesses having grease trapping equipment installed, aimed to stop 160 tonnes of fat being poured down the drain.

Scottish Water said the loss is equivalent to the weight of 28 adult elephants.

They worked with environmental inspectors from Environmental Compliance and Services (ECAS) to visit 172 businesses that serve food to educate them about the importance of disposing of fats, oils and grease correctly.

Businesses included restaurants, cafes, hotels, fast food outlets, academic institutions, supermarkets, and nursing homes.

Image copyright Scottish Water

The campaign, which began last September, proved so successful it was expanded to include a number of businesses in Cupar and the Quayside in Dundee.

As a result of the campaign 119 new or bigger grease traps were fitted in businesses across the area.

ECAS officials said it would help prevent 140 tonnes of grease in St Andrews' sewer in the first year and every year after.

Scottish Water also carried out a six-week deep clean of the sewers in the main streets of St Andrews, where 20 tonnes of fats, oils and grease was vacuumed out using specialist equipment.

Fatbergs potentially lead to blockages that can cause flooding and harm to the environment, including rivers and oceans.

Image copyright Scottish Water
Image caption A large fatberg in South Street sewer in St Andrews before it was removed

Mike Will, waste water operations general manager at Scottish Water, said that businesses had collectively spent about £500,000 fitting new grease trapping equipment.

Philip Soden, managing director of ECAS, added: "Most people simply didn't realise their own actions could potentially lead to sewer flooding, causing irreparable damage to their own community.

"Of all the places we have worked we found businesses in Fife were amongst the most keen to do their bit to protect their environment."

Image copyright Scottish Water

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