Thames Water’s hard-hitting Bin it – don’t block it campaign is set to reach more people than ever this autumn as the company releases two videos demonstrating how to correctly dispose of wet wipes and cooking fat.
The videos, which will be shared on the company’s social media feeds from today (Monday September 11), both feature an actor who is seen putting his wipe into a bathroom bin instead of flushing it down the toilet and putting used, cooled fat into a ramekin where it can be left to solidify before being put into the kitchen bin.
The videos contain a serious message delivered in a light-hearted way, which Thames Water’s ‘bin it’ team hope will catch the eye of its thousands of Facebook and Twitter followers.
Pat Lavender, who heads up the campaign, said: “We love our new videos, which we’re confident will help get our bin it – don’t block it message out even further and demonstrate that it’s really simple to get rid of fat and wipes without them ending up in the sewers and causing fatbergs and blockages.
“It would be easy just to tell people not to flush the wrong things or stop pouring fat down the sink but it’s important we also show them the alternatives and that’s exactly what these videos do.”
The new videos will supplement Thames Water’s existing campaign formats which target homes in areas identified as blockage hotspots with direct mail.
A survey following a campaign in east London in autumn 2016 showed 70 per cent of people who received direct mail changed their habits when it came to disposing of fat and wipes, which was reflected in a 26 per cent decrease in sewer blockages in the area.
In Thames Water’s patch three fat related blockages and 4.8 blockages caused by items like wet wipes are cleared from the sewers every hour, with engineers from the company visiting hundreds of homes and businesses each year that have been flooded with sewage due to an avoidable blockage.
Pat added: “These blockages aren’t just a costly nuisance to us but also to our customers, as an internal blockage in the home will usually need a private plumber to clear it, often at a cost of a couple of hundred pounds plus the cost of clearing up any sewage which has flooded out and ruined carpets and furniture.
“There’s also the impact on the environment when sewage spills out into public spaces and watercourses, which can be devastating to wildlife, so it’s easy to see why it’s important for everyone to bin it.”