As if the pandemic wasn’t bad enough, state and local utility providers are urging Australians not to flush anything but human waste and toilet paper down the drain after a dramatic surge in festy sewer blockages.

SA Water yesterday urged South Australians to avoid flushing anything but the “Three Ps” — that is, pee, poo, and (toilet) paper — lest residents unwittingly clog sewers and make life that much worse for everyone.

The pronouncement comes as shoppers continue to clear supermarket shelves of toilet paper, fearing extended periods cooped up at home due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The utility provider shared a fun picture of excess gunk shucked from a waste treatment plant, giving punters a good idea of how undesirable material can accumulate.

They are not the only ones. Observe this heaving mass, dredged from the sewers in Cairns, QLD:

The situation is just as dicey further south. Cop this indescribable wall of horror, as presented by the tough nuts at TasWater:

And, just for fun, come to your own conclusions about how this scrap of carpet (!) wound up in Tasmania’s waste treatment system:

It’s not all fun and games and shit.

Speaking to ABC News, Scott Moorhead of Townsville Water said the region usually drops about $2 million each year to clear such blockages. Demand for blockage-clearing services is currently much higher than average, he said.

It’s a situation you really, really, want to avoid, according to SA Water’s Anna Jackson.

“Chokes can occur in our mains or your internal plumbing, and more often than not result in everything in the pipe breaking out into the environment or unfortunately coming back up through your toilet or drain, requiring a plumber or one of our crews to clean up the mess,” she said earlier this month.

Consumers have been assured by supermarkets and manufacturers that there’s enough TP for everyone, if we handle this situation with a bit of calm.

All in all, please don’t go overboard with the loo roll. Someone out there might be thinking about putting carpet where carpet should never go.

Image: Cairns Regional Council / Facebook