How To Spot Dangerous "Fatbergs" At The Beach

Apr 11, 2016 By Jake Brannon

Here at Wimp, we love dogs, and would do whatever it takes to keep our furry friends safe. From providing them with healthy treats and toys, to keeping them on a leash in public places, dog owners must be constantly alert to potential new threats. Which is why people all over the Internet are spreading the word about a terrifying new danger that's been seen washing up all over beaches.

A woman was walking her dog along the English coast when he spotted something that grabbed his attention. She followed him and discovered a large, white blob resting in the sand. At first, she thought it was just a jellyfish, but the overbearing stench and foamy appearance suggested otherwise. After doing some more research, she learned that it wasn't anything natural at all ... but was actually a chunk of solid fat!

Termed "fatbergs" by the online community, these things are made up of congealed palm oil that has combined with trash. While they might look harmless, they're actually crawling with dangerous bacteria that can be fatal after just one lick. Dogs are primarily attracted to the smell, which many have compared to that of diesel fuel.


Shoreham Herald

And it doesn't always come in large pieces, either. This fatty material has the consistency of candle wax and could easily be mistaken for sea foam.


Andrew Hasson

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Some of these fatbergs travel thousands of miles before finally washing up on shore.


Andrew Hasson

Thankfully, beaches are taking precautions to warn visitors of the dangers that palm oil poses for their pets.


Dawlish News

Dogs aren't the only ones at risk. The bacteria found on these things can be harmful to humans as well, so direct contact should be avoided at all costs.


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Director Marc Abraham has spoken out about the dangers associated with fatbergs: "As the palm oil is so gelatinous it can get lodged in the esophagus and require emergency surgery. If you think your dog has swallowed something it shouldn't, contact your vet immediately."


Andrew Hasson

They're even causing trouble in the cities, too. London sewer workers have determined them to be the reason for major plumbing issues. Now you know why the water company always asks that you don't wash cooking grease down the sink.


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As it travels through our sewage systems, congealed fat can combine with other non-degradable materials, like wet wipes, making it a nightmare for plumbers and beachgoers alike. If you'd like to learn how you can properly dispose of your cooking oil, check out this handy guide. If you spot any of these nasty blobs at the beach this summer, please be sure to alert the lifeguards and local authorities immediately. We might not be able to make them disappear anytime soon, but we can warn others about their existence.

Don't forget to SHARE this cautionary story with your friends!

H/T: Boredom Therapy

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