Officials: Don’t Flush Baby Wipes 

Watch what you flush. Officials say baby wipes are making problems for wastewater treatment plants across the state.That includes Hampden, where their public works director, Chip Swan, says baby wipes and similar items are slowing down the works at their pumping station on the Mayo Road.He says the buildup strains their pump and their resources, since it has to be cleared out nearly every day. It’s one of nine pumping stations in town.From March until June, he says the problem cost an extra 13-thousand dollars, including extra labor from the City of Bangor. “We’ve been working hard the past year trying to fix the problem, but it’s like finding a needle in a haystack. We’ve gone door to door with notices, put notices in our newsletter and on our website,” Swan says.He says Hampden is working with an engineering firm to develop a grinder system, to wipe out the wipes and other materials that don’t belong.Officials say the issue continues to be a problem for towns across the state. State Rep. Bernard Ayotte is asking all Mainers to keep baby wipes and similar items out of the wastewater system.