Over the years, some interesting things have turned up at our Plum Island Wastewater Treatment Plant
This collection of rescued toys on display in the lab was aptly named “The Island of Misflushed Toys” by our plant staff.
“Island of Misflushed Toys”, so named by Dexter Clyde, Operator at the Plum Island Wastewater Treatment Plant. Photo courtesy of Patty Iler, Chemist. (Yes, these toys have been cleaned and disinfected.)
“One day someone brought in a cute toy they found in the step screen, so I washed it off and put it up on the counter. We started collecting them and it just got to be a thing,” said Patty Iler, Chemist.
Small misflushed toys are pretty harmless, but other things that people flush or pour down the drain on purpose do cause problems, namely wet wipes and grease. Fats, oils and grease clog pipes and wipes get balled up into large masses that jam pumps and clog pies. Even wipes labeled “flushable” cause clogs.
Remember the golden rule:
Only flush pee, poop and toilet paper! Everything else should go in the trash.
As much as we love our island of misfit toys, we’d like to keep it small.
What not to flush
Washington Post article on "flushable" wipes clogging sewer systems