Sewer-blocking London concreteberg weighs as much as a whale

Forget fatbergs. England has to chip an epic amount of concrete out of some sewer tunnels.

Amanda Kooser
Freelance writer Amanda C. Kooser covers gadgets and tech news with a twist for CNET. When not wallowing in weird gear and iPad apps for cats, she can be found tinkering with her 1956 DeSoto.
Amanda Kooser
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This horrifying mass of concrete will need to be manually removed.

Thames Water

Fatbergs have a cousin. Those iceberg-like conglomerations of congealed fats, diapers and baby wipes look like big softies next to London's newest sewer menace, the concreteberg. 

Thames Water, which services millions of London and Thames Valley customers, announced Thursday it's about to do battle with a record-breaking solidified cement blob that's clogging up three Victorian-era sewers in central London.

The concreteberg is at least 330 feet (100 meters) long and weighs over 115 tons (105 metric tons), making it as heavy as a blue whale.

Thames Water crews will battle the beastly berg with high-pressure jets and jackhammer pneumatic drills. It's expected to take a couple of months and at least several hundred thousand pounds (about $400,000) to clear the nightmarish mass. 

"This is not the first time damage has been caused by people pouring concrete into our sewers but it's certainly the worst we've seen," said Thames Water operations manager Alex Saunders. The company is investigating how the concrete got into the sewer and hopes to recover the cost of its removal.

The concreteberg might not be as viscerally disgust-inducing as a disease-ridden fatberg, but it's worthy of its own throne in the pantheon of sewer horrors.

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