Grossbusters’ coming to a Severn Trent sewer near you this Halloween

Thursday 27 October 2022

• If something doesn’t smell good in your neighbourhood, it could be due to a blockage in the sewer– and that could lead to a scary mess for everyone in the street

• There’s a simple trick to enjoying a treat this Halloween – don’t flush anything expect for the three P’s down the toilet or the drain

From fighting fatbergs to banishing blockages, Severn Trent’s waste teams are used to dealing with frightful messes caused by the wrong things being washed and flushed into the sewer network. 

This Halloween, the companies very own ‘Grossbusters’ team, consisting of Alex, Balbir, Owen, Jason, Scott, Luke, Jackie and Rayson are asking homeowners across the region to avoid putting fat, oil and grease down the drain or flush wet wipes down the toilet, as nightmarish blockages can quickly form and block the pipes, meaning that waste water could come back to haunt them or their neighbours.

Severn Trent has revealed it deals with thousands of blockages every year, with the majority caused by people putting things they shouldn’t down sinks and toilets. The average home sewer pipe is c.150mm in diameter - the same as a new roll of toilet paper, so it doesn’t take much for a blockage to form and cause sewage back up into people’s homes or into the local environment. 

Operations manager, Scott Burgin, from Severn Trent said: “If something doesn’t smell good in your neighbourhood, it could be due to a blockage in the sewer– and that could lead to a scary mess for everyone in the street.

“Blockages are the result of people flushing just one wipe here and there or washing the odd bit of fat down the sink with hot soapy water, and not realising that it’s all collecting in the pipe and creating a gruesome problem. These sewer blockages, if not identified and cleared can lead to sewers backing up and overflowing into people’s homes and gardens, which is a terrible thing to experience and completely preventable.

“Our Grossbusters are here to help people avoid the scare of finding that their waste pipe is blocked by reminding them that sewers are only designed to cope with the three P’s – pee, poo and paper - anything else including fat, oil and grease from the kitchen and nappies, tampons and sanitary products belong in the bin.”

Scott added: “Many people may not realise that they are responsible for the waste pipe running away from their home up until it either crosses the property boundary or meets with another waste pipe or sewer. The good news is that blockages are avoidable if people are careful about what they put down your toilet and wash down the sink.” 

If you do run into problems, either slow drains or a blocked sewer which is Severn Trent’s responsibility you can report it at or by calling 0800 783 4444.

Severn Trent also runs a programme which helps to advise food businesses on the best ways to dispose of oils and fats caused by cooking. Find out more here: 

You can find out more about Severn Trent's battle with sewer blockages and how they can be avoided at

You can watch our 'Grossbusters' videos on our YouTube channel here: