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Wastewater Service
Preventing Sewer Spills

What We Do

Preventing Sewer Spills

Sewage spills can cause health hazards, damage homes and businesses, and threaten the local environment.

Spills are often caused by pipeline blockages due to grease buildup, debris or structural damage due to tree roots.

How can you prevent sewer spills?

Never put grease down garbage disposals, drains or toilets. Mix fats, oils and grease (FOG) with absorbent waste materials like paper, coffee grounds or kitty litter and place it in the trash. Wipe food scraps from plates and pans into the trash as well.

Have your sewer pipes inspected and cleaned periodically to eliminate grease, debris and roots from causing a blockage.

Repair any damage to your sewer pipes that might compromise their integrity/capacity.

Never put hazardous materials down the drain!

Pouring the wrong thing down the drain can impact not only your sewer pipes, but also EMWD’s groundwater supply and the ability to provide safe and reliable wastewater (sewer) service.

For example, modern wastewater treatment plants like those operated by EMWD function primarily through a biological process that disposes of sewage. If a large amount of a pesticide or other harmful substance arrives at the plant through the sewer system over a relatively short period, it can literally “kill” a treatment plant, in some cases. That can cause massive environmental problems, great inconvenience for an entire community, and eventual sewer rate increases.

Residential holders of banned substances can take those materials to a household hazardous waste collection facility in their community or wait for a hazardous substances collection event. Information about collection facilities and events in Riverside County can be obtained by calling 951-358-5256.

Businesses should return banned substances to their suppliers.

Remember, it is very important that you dispose of these materials correctly. Never simply pour them down the drain or out on the ground.