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29 Apr 2020

COVID-19, URGENT: Mayor Kenney urges Philly residents to STOP flushing masks, gloves and wipes down the toilet

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April 29, 2020 Category: Coronavirus, Local Posted by:

“This is taking a toll on our water treatment infrastructure and residents’ private property.”

Mayor Kenney has an urgent and serious message for Philadelphia.

“We are seeing a large increase in the amount of PPE and other items being discarded through people flushing these items down the toilet,” said the Mayor.

“This is taking a toll on our water treatment infrastructure and residents’ private property.”

Nineteen of the Philadelphia Water Department’s pumping stations have been impacted by PPE waste, including gloves, masks, and wipes. The Water Department is seeing 12 times more infrastructure clogging waste at facilities than normal. Department officials are now reporting 100 pounds a month compared to the usual 100 pounds a year. This sudden influx threatens waterways and the various species living in them, and directly contributes to a notable increase in the likelihood of water main breaks.

Masks, gloves, and wipes should be properly disposed of in the trash. They should not be left on the ground, dropped into sewer inlets, or flushed down toilets. Additionally, flushable wipes are not flushable despite the label.

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