Over the past few months, you may well have seen, over the past couple of months we have been in the midst of an exciting, but challenging, bathroom renovation. But it’s odd what staring at bare floorboards for days on end can do to you – I found myself increasingly curious about what lies beneath… the crazy things that might be occupying the drains that are forever out of sight and out of mind.
Well, after a bit of research to satisfy my curiosity, it turns out there are a lot of weird and wonderful things that could well be lurking down there, some of which, may take you by surprise.
While there are some animals you might associate with drains more than others – rats, for example – many other critters have found themselves in subterranean sewage systems around the world. They include:
To see pictures and videos of animals (and alleged sewer monsters) with sewer-dwelling tendencies, take a look at this blog post from UKDN Waterflow (LG).
You may not have come across this term before but once you hear the definition you’ll understand what it means. According to Wikipedia, the proper definition is “a congealed lump of fat, sanitary items, wet wipes, and similar items found in sewer systems, which do not break down like toilet paper”. So, an iceberg essentially made out of fat. Lovely.
The biggest risk of fatbergs is, of course, that they can cause serious blockages in sewers, which could lead to untreated sewage ending up in rivers or even flooding homes.
They can be enormous, too. What many believe to be the biggest fatberg in British history was found in drains beneath Kingston upon Thames in 2013, weighing in at over 15 tonnes and the size of a bus.
According to UKDN Waterflow (LG), we can all do our bit to avoid fatbergs and blockages by avoiding putting the ‘dirty dozen’ down the drain. They are:
- Food waste
- Fat, oil and grease
- Plastic bags
- Sanitary towels, including tampons, applicators and wrappers
- Cotton buds
- Bandages and plasters
- Baby wipes
- Medicines, needles and syringes
- Cleaning wipes
- Razor blades
Back in 2009, it was reported that tens of thousands of pounds worth of pure gold was found at the Suwa treatment facility in Nagano, Japan. At the time that was more than was recorded by the country’s Hishikari Mine, one of the world’s leading gold mines!
Just imagine…although I wouldn’t like to sift through sewage for it.
Another amazing discovery was made in Canada in 2009. Drainage workers in Edmonton were surprised to find a tooth and a limb bone belonging to a dinosaur stuck in the walls of a sewer. The dinosaur in question was apparently an Albertosaurus, a close relative of the Tyrannosaurus Rex, which was first discovered in 1884 in Canada.
My son would have loved to discover a dinosaur under our bathroom! He was dinosaur mad when he was a little boy.
These are just a few of the most unusual things found in drains and sewers around the world. I wonder what lies beneath your bathroom?
Disclosure: A collaborative approach with UKDN Waterflow (LG) Ltd