Only flush the 3 P’s

Date published: 1 September 2023

Council is reminding residents that the only safe items that should be flushed down toilets are the 3 P's: Pee, Poo, and (toilet) Paper.

Every year, Council clears out approximately 1,500 blockages from drains and pipes with these blockages being mostly human-made and preventable.

The What the Flush campaign aims to increase awareness and understanding of pipe and drain blockages and improve behaviours to prevent blockages from occurring.

Water and Resource Recovery Committee Chairperson Russ Cook said the people of Townsville must remember to only flush the 3 P’s.

“Our overarching goal is to work towards clean sewer networks that reduce pressure on our treatment systems,” Cr Cook said.

“The 3 P's message is something all of our community needs to be aware of and our What The Flush campaign helps to educate the community on what is suitable to go down drains and what should be avoided.”

Blockages occur when non-biodegradable and non-flushable items such as baby wipes or menstrual products, that do not break down easily stop the flow of wastewater in the pipes.

“When pipe blockages occur, any substances that are flushed or poured down drains after typically come back up – often very unpleasant and always unwelcomed,” Cr Cook said.

“We want to see Townsville residents remember the 3 P’s and to take pride and care for our natural environment.”

The following examples are items that should NEVER go down your drains:

  • baby wipes/cotton balls/paper towels
  • sanitary products (tampons and pads)
  • condoms
  • grease/oils/fats.

Bin it, don’t bog it!

Council provides a multitude of free waste disposal options throughout the city. Visit Household Waste for more information.

For answers to common wastewater questions, visit Common Wastewater Questions.