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Water company calls for laws on what may be flushed

09:40 27/01/2015

Water supply company Aquafin has called for clarity and legal regulations regarding what may be flushed down an ordinary household toilet. At present, customers flush all kinds of things down the toilet, including wet-wipes, disposable nappies, sanitary products and so-called flushable toilet rolls.

None of those is suitable for flushing, according to Aquafin, which said that such products do not break down properly in water, regardless of what their own publicity might suggest. Pumps are becoming blocked at water treatment plants, at great expense, said the company.

“It might say on packaging that a product is biodegradable, but that’s only true in the long term,” explained Aquafin spokesperson Sabine Schellens to VTM News. “The product doesn’t have the time necessary in the sewage system to break down, and that’s why it causes blockages when it gets to us.”

The company, which serves all of Flanders, called for legal measures such as requirements for packaging. “The packaging should state clearly that something cannot go into the sewage system. If it is all right to flush, that should also be clearly indicated,” Schellens said. 

Written by Alan Hope