TRENTON — It was a blockage in a non-city owned sewer line that caused a sewage backup behind the Luther Towers apartments during the Thanksgiving weekend, according to city officials.

Mayor Reed Gusciora visited the large puddle of sewage in a field along Route 29 on Sunday and called in the Trenton Sewage Authority.

Crews then worked all day to find the cause of the blockage and to alleviate the situation.

The cause was a build up of grease in a sewer line that began at the Colonial Gardens apartment complex next door.

"Sewer personnel were able to successful clean out the obstruction, which has abated the problem for now. They have also successfully contacted the building manager and advised him on additional measures to properly clean the lines and prevent this issue from happening again," city spokesman William Skaggs told New Jersey 101.5.

Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora inspects a sewage leak behind the Luther Towers in Trenton 11/29/21
Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora inspects a sewage leak behind the Luther Towers in Trenton 11/29/21 (Brian McCarthy)

No grease in the drain

Skaggs said there does not appear to be a risk to residents and city health and housing inspectors are inspecting the site to check for any other potential issues.

Trenton Water Works on its website advises not to pour grease down the drain, comparing it to fat that accumulates in human arteries.

"Oil and grease solidifies and accumulates in household pipes, restricting the flow of wastewater and causing sewer backups and overflows. Fats, oils, and grease (FOG) separate from other liquids as it goes down your drain. The fats, oils and grease cool and stick to household pipes and sewer pipes," the TWW said.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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