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Canada, U.S. waste-water groups join forces in war on 'flushable' wipes

OTTAWA - The pleas of Canadian waste-water officials to federal and provincial politicians for a crackdown on so-called flushable wipes are falling on deaf ears. It's a municipal problem, so the refrain goes, and so the Canadian Water and Waste-water Association is joining forces with its American counterpart, the Water Environment Federation, to take aim at the popular towelettes. The wipes — billed as a cleaner alternative to toilet paper that's perfectly OK to flush down the toilet — are giving many municipalities fits as they grapple with costly clogs.

Back up claims of 'flushable' wipes, utilities in Canada tell manufacturers

OTTAWA - They're billed as a fresh, clean alternative to toilet paper — but waste-water utilities across Canada say personal wipes are creating putrid sewage clogs that are costing Canadian ratepayers at least $250 million a year. Sewage experts in Canada, the U.S. and beyond are cringing at efforts to sell the masses on the need to freshen their nether regions, including a recent ad campaign for Cottonelle wipes featuring a cheeky British spokeswoman urging people in public places to "talk about your bum."

Small bag offers solution to Kenyan slum's 'flying toilets'

The usually straightforward act of going to the toilet is far from simple in Kibera, the sprawling slum on the edge of Kenya's capital. Hundreds of thousands of people, whose homes are little more than makeshift shacks, are crammed into an area that lacks the most basic water and sanitation facilities, and where just one public toilet is available to every 300 people.

Tempest in a toilet costs New York restaurant workers their jobs

By Jonathan Allen NEW YORK (Reuters) - Restroom attendants at Balthazar, the trend-setting French-style bistro in New York City, will soon be relieved of their duties watching others relieve themselves after a customer wrote on his influential business news website that it is a demeaning job. Henry Blodget, founder and editor of Business Insider, published an account on Friday of his consistently uncomfortable encounters with bathroom attendants in the restaurant in Manhattan's upscale Soho neighborhood.

US toilet restaurant rides 'poop' publicity wave

A restaurant billed as America's first toilet-themed eatery has just opened in Los Angeles -- and is packing in diners after a wave of free publicity for the concept, said to be imported from Asia. The Magic Restroom restaurant, where customers sit on ceramic bathroom bowls and eat from toilet-shaped tableware, did brisk business on its first fully open weekend. Some might wonder who would want to eat surrounded by reminders of where the food ends up. But Friday's grand opening was by all accounts a huge success, fueled by media interest from around the world.

New York man hit by exploding toilet

A New York man was seriously injured when a toilet exploded in his face after he pulled the handle to test the water pressure in his Brooklyn apartment. Michel Pierre sustained shrapnel wounds from flying shards of porcelain that pierced his face, arms and legs, and required 30 stitches, his lawyer told AFP. The 58-year-old information technology specialist is now so fearful that he uses a rope to flush the toilet from behind the bathroom door at a safe distance.

New York man hit by exploding toilet

A New York man was seriously injured when a toilet exploded in his face after he pulled the handle to test the water pressure in his Brooklyn apartment. Michel Pierre sustained shrapnel wounds from flying shards of porcelain that pierced his face, arms and legs, and required 30 stitches, his lawyer told AFP. The 58-year-old information technology specialist is now so fearful that he uses a rope to flush the toilet from behind the bathroom door at a safe distance.

Restaurant co-owner charged in alleged hidden-camera case

VANCOUVER - A warrant is out for the arrest of a restaurant co-owner who authorities allege observed or recorded people "in a place in which they could reasonably be expected to be nude." Two former employees of the restaurant say they were told by a co-owner not charged in the matter that he discovered a USB-key-sized camera on Dec. 18, 2012 while cleaning around the toilet in the co-ed washroom used by patrons and staff of the now-closed upscale establishment.

What not to flush: Wipes, paper towels among items clogging sewers

Wastewater officials across the country have been trying to spread the message that not just anything can go down the toilet, and they have recently taken aim at wipes. A public awareness campaign by the Orange County Sanitation District in California called "What 2 Flush" emphasizes that the toilet is meant only for the three Ps — pee, poop and toilet paper. It even says facial tissues are too sturdy to be flushed. Among the more unusual items it says people commonly flush that risk causing clogs: cat litter, condoms and dental floss.

China to fine sloppy pee-ers

The city of Shenzen plans to crack down on urinators who miss their mark – provoking online derision over how the rule will be enforced. The pee fine will apply to those who urinate outside the bowl of facilities in Shenzhen, the southern boom town neighbouring Hong Kong, although draft regulations seen by AFP did not specify a minimum quantity of spillage required to be classed as a violation.
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