What does the term “flushable” really mean? Every day, we use countless items for our daily routine: cotton swabs, facial tissue, dental floss, wipes, etc. While you may already stop to consider if the items you use every day are made responsibly, have you ever thought about their impact after you use them?
Our city is facing a growing problem with items that do not belong in the sanitary sewer system. On your normal trip down the grocery aisle, you may notice many items labeled “flushable.” With few exceptions, the term “flushable” simply means it will leave a standard household toilet with a normal flush volume. These items, however, are probably not designed to disintegrate in the sanitary sewer as does normal toilet paper. Baby wipes, cosmetic-removal wipes, personal-hygiene wipes and common paper towels are often made to be durable in order to handle tough cleaning jobs, but that also means they remain durable once they are discarded. Other items such as dental floss, cotton swabs and feminine hygiene products that are not “flushable” often also end up in the sewer system. Many times, these items collect in the system or lodge themselves in equipment that is not designed to handle them.
The Garland Water Department asks that you throw away these items in a trash can instead of flushing them down the toilet. Discarding these directly into your garbage will reduce time and resources in service and maintenance due to buildup of “flushable” items.