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WWYD kids flushing sanitary napkins down the toilet

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  • WWYD kids flushing sanitary napkins down the toilet

    So we have a barn that has a handful of teenagers coming and going. We have signs up in the bathroom asking people not to flush sanitary products down the toilet, and a little trash barrel in there so there should be no problem, right? Wrong. The sewer pump is clogged again. My tenant wants to tear her hair out and there is no good way to "train up" everyone on how to properly use the toilet. What to do next? Port a potty is my only idea - which again is punishing everyone for the sins of a few or one. Any ideas out there? It is about $300 every time the plumber has to come out.

  • #2
    This happened at my middle school. All the female students were gathered up and told in no uncertain terms that sanitary napkins - not even "flushable" tampons - were to go in the toilet. Ever.

    Perhaps you could send out a mass e-mail of the same effect and explain how much it costs to fix it each time.
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    • #3
      If you have, say 10, teenage females on the property, add a $30 'plumbers surcharge' to each of their board bills for every plumbers visit. Make sure that everyone knows this will happen and that everyone will be required to pay up .... until they figure out how to use the provided container and the blockages stop.

      This punishes all the teenage females but not any males. If you suspect any adult females may also be offenders, add them into the surcharge pricing.

      "Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit."
      - Desiderata, (c) Max Ehrman, 1926


      • #4
        I would tell them they either stop flushing the products down the toilet or they will have to use a porta potty. That would be incentive enough for me. One other thought, is there a wastebasket in the toilet for them to use. I know that as a teen, I would have been embarrased to carry the stuff, even wrapped, to an outside waste basket.
        I'm a second hand Vegan. Cows eat grass. I eat cows.


        • #5
          Originally posted by ShotenStar View Post
          If you have, say 10, teenage females on the property, add a $30 'plumbers surcharge' to each of their board bills for every plumbers visit. Make sure that everyone knows this will happen and that everyone will be required to pay up .... until they figure out how to use the provided container and the blockages stop.

          This punishes all the teenage females but not any males. If you suspect any adult females may also be offenders, add them into the surcharge pricing.

          Err, I'm sorry, but the second that charge showed up on my bill I'd be handing in my 30 days notice. It's not MY fault that other people are morons and don't follow directions.

          The best thing to do may be to gather everyone up and have a big discussion about it, explaining the costs and how board will have to go up for EVERYONE if it continues. Or threaten to lock the bathroom and go the port-a-potty route, if you must.

          The addition board charges for just select individuals, however, would not go over well. At least not for me.


          • #6
            Make sure the trash can is right there, AND that it is the type with a foot pedal-operated lid, with scented trash can liners. Make sure there's ample TP available to wad them up in. In other words, make it easy and as unembarrassing as possible. No open trash containers.

            Post a sign RIGHT THERE that says
            One more clogged potty=porta potty.
            Flush ONLY toilet paper and human waste.

            I would call a barn meeting with the gals and TELL them you are six hundred dollars in the hole and it will NOT happen again. The rest room will be padlocked if this happens again. The plumber told you the source of the problem, it's not a guess, it's a fact. Period

            Pun intended.


            • #7
              It is like in the army where everybody does push-ups if the person who does the infraction does not 'fess up...and since nobody rats on anybody else, they all get the punishment.

              Me....I didn't join the army and never wanted to. Can't take the discipline or taking orders come what may.
              Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


              • #8
                Are they for sure flushing napkins, or tampons? Tampons could clog up a toilet too.

                But if you don't have something like little brown paper bags, it's very difficult to get people to just chuck a tampon into the trash. That's why so many businesses will provide bags for that purpose.
                Proud Member Of The Lady Mafia


                • #9
                  As you have learned, no one reads signs.
                  People seem to think they are made as a type of wall art, not as something they should read and obey.

                  If you can not get all the female barn participants to a meeting then take the time to say something to them one at time as you see them.

                  Make it clear that nothing at all but toilet paper and bodily waste is to be flushed down the toilet.

                  I would add a sign on the outside of the toilet room door with the line about having to switch to the porta-potty if flushing issues do not stop.

                  People have a 'not me' concept. If I am the only who flushes this one super maxi pad it will not be a problem, etc.

                  They need to know they are all problem.

                  Not that I think it should be necessary (because tampons can be easily wrapped in toilet paper), I agree that making it super easy to toss them out discreetly will make it more likely that they will get tossed.


                  • #10
                    Most teenagers probably don't know what "sanitary napkins" are. They are pads or maxi pads. You may have one teen that doesn't realize they are dumping the offending "napkins" in the toilet.
                    Last edited by Petstorejunkie; Aug. 18, 2011, 11:15 PM.
                    chaque pas est fait ensemble


                    • #11
                      Here's a site where you can purchase offical looking signs for the restroom:


                      Or create a custom one:

                      There are friends and faces that may be forgotten, but there are horses that never will be. - Andy Adams


                      • #12
                        How about putting a lock on the door so they have to come ask for it. That way you have a good idea who the culprit is???...


                        • #13
                          So becuse this occurred at a barn this is a horse related topic and I was reported for a non horse related post.

                          To arms to arms the napkins are coming, yep horse related my horses butts, (just wanted to have a little horse talk here) but to keep on the discussion, I ran a Greyhound agency many years ago and believe me there is no nastier group to have to clean up after than womens bathrooms.

                          They pee down the drains or defecate in the sink, don't care no respect.

                          One final note why would I even post to this, simple to call attention to the hypocrisy but I will not draw this to the attention of a mod, that would just be simply childish, i leave that to others.

                          So do all that you can think of but the little darlings will continue to flush, yep bet the barn on it(just a little more horse talk).


                          • Original Poster

                            the sign and the lock

                            I love the sign - thank you it is very pretty. I didn't think that they wouldn't know what sanitary products might mean, but you could be on to something there. I thought about the lock and key deal but there is no way to know if it is from the day before it has clogged or from an accumulation of products. I think the woman who rents from me is going to have a big ole sit down with a slide show and the last slide should be the porta potty.


                            • #15
                              I like katarine's idea.

                              When I was in college (marine science major) I used to go out on a NOAA ship with a sign in the head that read "Don't put anything into the toilet unless you have eaten it first."

                              Don't put that sign up.
                              I'm not ignoring the rules. I'm interpreting the rules. Tamal, The Great British Baking Show


                              • #16
                                I would do 2 things: email or snail mail a note about this specific issue, and follow up with an all-barn meeting.

                                Make it very clear that rural septic tank systems are delicate beasts that cost $$$ to unclog.

                                If it happens again after doing these 2 things then I'd lock up the bathroom and keep it off limits, making everyone aware of the reason for why this was being done. Tough crap, everyone - pun intended.

                                I like the idea of adding the plumbing surcharge to bills, too.

                                People are something else, aren't they?


                                • #17
                                  Yep...lock it, and don't get a port a potty-they've been warned, and let the other boarders take it out on them...sometimes 'peer pressure' is the worst.
                                  Equine Massage Therapy Classes and Rehab for Horses


                                  • #18
                                    Is there a certain week out of the month you can lock it :-)


                                    • #19
                                      I'd have a group meeting. Explain that nothing can be flushed down the toilet - pads or tampons, even if they say "flushable." That might be part of the problem. I remember when a plumber had to go to one of my friend's houses to fish a flushable tampon out and the plumber talked to her. I remember being just shocked that you couldn't flush something that says flushable. You might have to tell them that because your system may be more fragile than theirs at home. See if that helps. It may be a lack of understanding of what's going on.
                                      Also consider whether it couldn't be an adult. I wouldn't think it would be, but you never know.


                                      • #20
                                        I'd provide a box of nappy sacks and a rubbish bin.

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