By David Spereall, local democracy reporter
Children’s toys, scooters and kitchen appliances are among the items that have been fly-tipped into Leeds’ drainage system.
Broken toasters and microwaves have been found by council staff responsible for maintaining gullies across the city.
The local authority has reminded local residents to dispose of their waste responsibly and to avoid flushing items that might cause blockages down the toilet.
The revelation was made at a council community committee on Monday.
Eleanor Jordan, an engineer from the local authority’s highway maintenance team, said: “Gully pots are not rubbish bins.
“You’d be surprised what we pull out of the gullies. We’ve had toasters, scooters, children’s toys and microwaves.
Expressing surprise at the length fly-tippers are going to, she added: “The effort to actually lift the grate must be greater than just putting it in a wheelie bin.”
Ms Jordan said the UK’s drainage system was struggling to function as a whole, with most of the infrastructure having been built in the Victorian era to serve far fewer houses.
But she told councillors that unnecessary blockages were a frequent problem too.
So-called fatbergs are a chronic issue in sewers when non-perishable items club together and form a blockage.
Ms Jordan said: “We as residents are filling our sewers with items that are not biodegradable. These form most of the blockages.
“These are most notably fat, oil and baby wipes.
“I must stress these things should not be poured down sinks, tipped into gullies or flushed down toilets.”