Preventing Grease in the Sewer System

Effects of Pouring Grease Down the Drain

A thriving business community is vital to Needham and its neighborhoods. A healthy economy benefits every business and resident. But when businesses discharge grease into the sewers, it can cause sanitary sewer overflows and interfere with the town's sewer operations. It also violates Needham's Sewer Use Regulations and a fine will be issued.

Sewer back-ups are a major sewer system problem that damages property and affects public health. In some areas, back-ups are frequently caused by grease clogging the local sewers. To address this problem, Needham is helping businesses comply with the town's sewer use regulations, which also include requirements concerning the proper sizing, installation, and maintenance of grease interceptors. The Town is educating not only restaurant owners but also operators of nursing homes, fruit and vegetable stands, laundries, and dry cleaners, among others, to keep grease and other materials and chemicals out of the sewer system.

Proper Disposal by Commercial Establishments

Food Service Establishments (FSEs) are a significant source of fats, oil, and grease (FOG) because of the amount of grease used in cooking. Through implementation of Best Management Practices (BMPs), installing proper grease traps, these establishments should be able to significantly reduce the amount of FOG that goes down their drains. This will minimize back-ups and help business owners comply with the Town's requirements.

To work effectively, sewer systems need to be properly maintained, from the drain to the treatment plant. If wastes are disposed of correctly, the town's sewer system can handle them without any problem. Grease is an example of a waste that the sewer system cannot handle, and therefore should not be put down the drain. The town needs businesses and individuals to do their part to maintain the system because repeated repairs are disruptive to residences and businesses alike.

Furthermore, proper disposal by commercial establishments is required by law.