-legal action taken against five defaulters
The Guyana Water Incor-porated (GWI) has begun to move against restaurant owners and commercial cooking vendors who have not installed grease traps in their businesses as the solidified fats are damaging its motor pumps.
GWI’s Director of Corporate Services, attorney-at-law Nigel Niles said the company has put five defaulting business owners before the court and has sent warning letters to several others. In a press release, GWI said disposing of any solid matter, other than lavatory and kitchen waste into the sewerage system is a criminal offence under the Water and Sewerage Act of 2002.
All food handling facilities are required to install grease receptors to pre-treat grease entering the sewer. Receptors or grease traps should be sized according to the volume of waste water being discharged from the facility. “A typical grease trap must have the capacity to hold wastewater for a minimum of 30 minutes before it is discharged into the sewer system,” GWI said. Grease traps should be cleaned consistently and all fats and other solid waste should be removed from the trap and discarded appropriately.
GWI said it had previously appealed to commercial customers to install grease traps in their businesses by way of letters and a public education programme. The company also provided information on the specification of the units suitable for individual businesses. According to Sanitation Manager Rensforde Joseph only 35% of the eating houses located in the sewered area have grease traps installed and as such the sewerage system is abused. He said solid waste, especially fats and oils, dumped into the system by delinquent customers solidify and clog the sewer lines. The fat causes major damage when it becomes caught in the sewerage pumps.
GWI said when the sewerage pump motors are damaged it causes sewerage overflows which are a terrible inconvenience and a health hazard. GWI has started rehabilitating the sewerage system under the Georgetown Water Supply and Sewerage Programme II funded by the IDB. The Tucville Septage Receiving Station and several pump stations countrywide were recently completed under this programme.