A view of the fatberg under Sidmouth
The quiet coastal town of Sidmouth, England is known to be flush with tourists each summer. But it may now be known for another accumulating mass—one that isn’t flushable.
Authorities in Sidmouth have discovered a 64-meter-long hardened clump of grease, wet wipes, and sewage—an infamous fatberg—lurking and growing in a large sewer under the town’s waterfront. For perspective, at 64 meters, the length of the mass is greater than that of six double-decker buses end to end and the height of the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
“It is the largest discovered in our service history,” Andrew Roantree said in a statement. Roantree is the director of wastewater at South West Water, which manages the sewers in the town of about 13,000. He estimated that it will take “around eight weeks to dissect this monster in exceptionally challenging work conditions.” The team taking on the task will require “full breathing apparatus” and “special sewer jetting equipment,” he said.