Council contractor stabbed by needle while cleaning out 70kg plug

DANGER: The remains of a 70kg plug of rags, wet wipes, clothing and fat found by council workers called to clear a blocked sewer in Stanley Road yesterday. A needle penetrated a man’s safety glove during the clean up and he was taken to hospital. Facebook picture

A Gisborne District Council contractor was stabbed by a needle when clearing a blocked drain yesterday.

Contractors were called to a blocked sewer in Stanley Road where they removed a 70kg plug of rags, wet wipes, clothing and fat.

One of the men was stabbed in the hand with a needle through his safety glove, when pulling the blockage from the pipe.

He was taken to Gisborne Hospital and is undergoing antibiotic treatment and will be monitored for months for infection.

The incident has prompted a reminder from the district council about what should be going into the town’s sewers.

“Remember the 3 Ps — pee, poo and paper, that’s all that should go into the sewer system,” council says in a post on its Facebook page.

“It is not designed for clothing, towels, wet wipes, needles and fat — the correct place to dispose of these is in your general rubbish.

“Flushing these items down the sewer can cause pipes to block and sewage will come back up on to your property through the gully trap,” the council advised.

“Or it can block the main sewer system and raw untreated sewage will get into our waterways.”

A Gisborne District Council contractor was stabbed by a needle when clearing a blocked drain yesterday.

Contractors were called to a blocked sewer in Stanley Road where they removed a 70kg plug of rags, wet wipes, clothing and fat.

One of the men was stabbed in the hand with a needle through his safety glove, when pulling the blockage from the pipe.

He was taken to Gisborne Hospital and is undergoing antibiotic treatment and will be monitored for months for infection.

The incident has prompted a reminder from the district council about what should be going into the town’s sewers.

“Remember the 3 Ps — pee, poo and paper, that’s all that should go into the sewer system,” council says in a post on its Facebook page.

“It is not designed for clothing, towels, wet wipes, needles and fat — the correct place to dispose of these is in your general rubbish.

“Flushing these items down the sewer can cause pipes to block and sewage will come back up on to your property through the gully trap,” the council advised.

“Or it can block the main sewer system and raw untreated sewage will get into our waterways.”

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