High School in Maryland Plagued By Grease Trap Odors

High School in Maryland Plagued By Grease Trap Odors

A wide swath of a local high school in Maryland was recently flooded by a foul odor. The smell spread across the school and lingered well past dismissal as a contractor cleaned a clogged grease trap and sewage backup in the cafeteria.

“Students were rightfully complaining,” said a representative to the Baltimore Teachers Union. Much of the school smelled “uniquely bad.”

Students were mystified by the source of the putrid odor, which turned out to be from a sewage backup. The grease trap gets blocked once or twice a year, requiring a cleanup, but the cleanup has always taken place on a weekend.

Some students had headaches and others had trouble breathing. “There’s nothing earth-shattering about the fact that it’s an infrastructure issue,” he said. The principal asked permission from her superiors at city schools headquarters to send students home early.

“My head was pounding,” said one of the teachers. “My room faces the parking area where pump is removing waste.”

A member of the school’s PTA said her son tried to call her, but poor reception got in the way. “He could not take the smell anymore,” she said. “Everybody just wanted to get out of the class because it was so rancid, my words not his, he’s 16.”

“Nobody can work in those conditions,” she said.

Some teachers declined to speak publicly for fear of retribution.

A staffer for the City Council President who is an alumnus of the school, said he looked into the matter as soon as he heard about the grease interceptor issue on social media. “It appears from what he heard, the smell wasn’t spread across the whole school.”

The chair of the City Council’s Education and Youth Committee, said he had talked to a few teachers about the incident.

If your school system wants to prevent issues with grease trap clogs disrupting classes, consider installing The Drain Strainer. Invented by a former restaurant owner, The Drain Strainer captures the food solids that can clog your grease trap while still allowing your sinks to drain quickly.

It also creates an air gap, so if your sewer ever backs up, the water can’t travel back up to your 3 compartment sinks. The Drain Strainer is also an effective and affordable alternative to a commercial garbage disposal.

Scroll to Top