The City of Gatlinburg’s Utilities Department encourages all water and sewer customers to only flush toilet paper, not disinfecting wipes or other non-flushable items that should be disposed of in other manners.
Flushing only toilet paper helps ensure that toilets, plumbing and the public water system will continue working properly to safely manage wastewater.
“Fibers in disposable wipes do not breakdown readily and cause major issues in the wastewater system,” Gatlinburg Utilities manager Dale Phelps said.
Even wipes labeled as “flushable” should not be disposed of in that manner and should be thrown away in household garbage cans.
“Even wipes that claim to be flushable should be thrown in the trash,” Phelps said. “Flushing these items can cause pipe blockages and damage internal plumbing and the public water system.”
Public water systems across the country have seen an increase in the amount of wipes and other debris which have been flushed into the wastewater system since the COVID-19 pandemic began. The insertion of such debris into the wastewater system results in many hours of maintenance to unclog pipes and pumps, as well as increases wear on pumps and results in increased electrical costs.
For the latest updates from the City of Gatlinburg, visit GatlinburgTN.gov or visit the City’s Social Media pages on Facebook and Twitter.