Wastewater discharges containing high concentrations of fats, oils and grease (FOG) from food service establishments such as restaurants, schools, nursing homes, day cares and other similar public facilities contribute to more than half of the blockages or overflows in the District’s wastewater collection system and increase maintenance and treatment costs.
Fats, Oils, and Grease are a natural consequence of cooking and occur naturally in many foods. Grease is the common term for animal fats and vegetable oils. It can be found in such items as: meat fats, lard, butter and margarine, cooking oil, food scraps, and baking goods.
In an effort to effectively address the issue, the District has developed a FOG Management Program.
The purpose of the FOG Management Program is to establish uniform permitting, maintenance and monitoring requirements for controlling the discharge of fat, oil, & grease from food service facilities discharging into the District’s wastewater collection system.
Food Service Establishments
Ronald Wastewater District's rules and regulations require all commercial establishments generating fat, oil and grease to establish and maintain a management program which is approved by the District. The plan requires the installation or modification of grease interceptors, traps or biological process which will meet King County and Ronald Wastewater District standards. The District has also provided a list of Best Management Practices (BMPs) that can help reduce the discharge of fat, oil and grease (FOG) into the wastewater system. Implementation of BMPs has the added benefit of reducing FOG and solids accumulation in grease interceptors, thereby reducing the maintenance needs and costs of the control devices. The efforts of BMPs combined with regularly scheduled grease interceptor maintenance can minimize the likelihood that an establishment will cause a sewer system stoppage that results in a backup causing property or environmental damage and an enforcement action or fines.
Download a copy of our FOG pamphlet for Business Customers to display in your kitchen to help your employees fight FOG
Many of the BMPs for commercial business are equally applicable to private dwellings. The following are recommended for all residences.
* Use a grease can. Never pour grease or cooking oil down the sink drain, or into the toilet. Instead, pour grease and oil into a can. (Fig. 1)
* Scrape dishes before washing. Don’t put grease and food scraps down the drain even if you have a garbage disposal. (Fig. 2)
* Put a basket or strainer in sink drains to catch food scraps and other solids. Empty the contents of the strainer into the trash. (Fig. 3)
The District enforces the sewer use regulations and when a commercial establishment is found not to be in compliance, the District has the authority to assess penalties to the business and the business will be liable for any damages resulting from non-compliance (Res. 09-26)
The District routinely sends inspectors to businesses to check interceptors and make sure they are correctly sized, properly installed, maintained, and operating efficiently.