The biggest "fatberg" ever found in a residential sewer has been removed by engineers in Kingston, south-west London, after three weeks of work.

The "fatberg," a collection of fat and wet wipes, weighed 15 tons and was the size of a bus.

Gordon Hailwood, a sewer contract manager for Thames Water, said if it had not been discovered in time, raw sewage could have started to spurt out of manholes across the whole of Kingston.

He warned of the dangers of "fatbergs," saying that Thames Water was trying to spread the message of "bin it and don't block it".(Giant Fatberg was the size of a bus(Video)

"Protecting and maintaining water distributions systems is crucial to ensuring high quality drinking water. Distribution systems -- consisting of pipes, pumps, valves, storage tanks, reservoirs, meters, fittings, and other hydraulic appurtenances -- carry drinking water from a centralized treatment plant or well supplies to consumers taps. Spanning almost 1 million miles in the United States, distribution systems represent the vast majority of physical infrastructure for water supplies, and thus constitute the primary management challenge from both an operational and public health standpoint...." (Distribution Systems: Assessing and Reducing Risks) FREE PDF download of the full book at The National Academies Press...

Since early July, neighbors in a Cedar Hills neighborhood were getting sick. In September, symptoms got worse. Several people have been diagnosed with giardia since then, but what was causing it and why was it was spreading was not clear. "We did find a cross-connect in (a) cluster of valves where there was a two inch lateral tied from the culinary irrigation to the pressurized irrigation," said City Manager David Bunker....The only common factor among the 13 affected houses was dirty yellow water. Simply put, a small, unknown pipe was allowing in secondary water. But the city didn't know about it. It was never identified on the construction plan. (Cedar Hills residents get giardia parasite from dirty water supply)

Many people assume that plumbing work conducted by a licensed plumbing contractor would not pose a hazard to the their drinking water supply system. This is not always the case as written in this article about a Minnesota plumbing company no longer in business after 2 known cross connection incidents. (Minnesota plumber causes Cross Connection...Twice!)

Roseville law enforcement and leaders have unveiled a program of painting water backflow devices to make them more easily detected if stolen. Metal thieves in Roseville will have a much harder time selling stolen items, thanks to a new program launched by the City of Roseville. Within the last several years, there has been in increase in metal thefts of utility- and private-owned water backflow devices... (City Launches Program to Prevent Metal Thefts (Video)

SARATOGA SPRINGS, UTAH -- Saratoga Springs leaders are talking about putting teeth into a city code on cross connecting culinary drinking water with irrigation lines after a bacteria outbreak. While the city continues to investigate potential. ($10,000 fine for illegal Cross Connections)