A fatberg “the size of a small bungalow” has been removed from a Canary Wharf sewer, after Thames Water engineers spent two weeks clearing it.
The grease build-up was found underneath Yabsley Street, near the London offices of Barclays, Citibank and Credit Suisse.
Canary Wharf residents and workers have been urged to be “careful what they flush”, with engineers warning the fatberg could have caused sewage to spill into homes.
Fatbergs form when oil, grease and fat are poured down the drain and encounter non-biodegradable items such as wet wipes, nappies and cotton wool.
Thames Water workers and MTS Cleansing Services spent a fortnight using high-powered water jets and hand tools to chip away at the blockage.
Chris Henderson, from MTS Cleansing Services, said teams worked “tirelessly” and “achieved great results in difficult conditions”.
Head of waste networks at Thames Water, Matt Rimmer, described the fatberg as “huge and disgusting”, adding that it smelt of rotting meat and festival toilets.
“This was a huge, disgusting fatberg that took a great deal of brute force and teamwork to clear,” he said.
“Our brilliant engineers were able to clear the huge blockage before it caused serious problems, negotiating tricky and cramped working conditions along the way.”
In October last year, the water firm had to remove another fatberg said to have weighed “more than an African elephant”.
Thames Water spends around £18m each year clearing 75,000 blockages from sewers in London and the Thames Valley.
In 2019, Thames Water cleared fatbergs weighing a combined 140 tonnes from Greenwich, Pall Mall and the Shard, while in 2017, a 250-metre-long blockage was discovered in Whitechapel Road.