A plumber is a tradesperson who specializes in installing and maintaining systems used for potable (drinking) water, sewage and drainage in plumbing systems. The term dates from ancient times, and is related to the Latin word for lead, "plumbum".
The word "plumber" dates from the Roman Empire. The Latin for lead is plumbum. Roman roofs used lead in conduits and drain pipes4 and some were also covered with lead, lead was also used for piping and for making baths. In medieval times anyone who worked with lead was referred to as a plumber as can be seen from an extract of workmen fixing a roof in Westminster Palace and were referred to as plumbers "To Gilbert de Westminster, plumber, working about the roof of the pantry of the little hall, covering it with lead, and about various defects in the roof of the little hall". Thus a person with expertise in working with lead was first known as a Plumbarius which was later shortened to plumber.
Plumbing - basic
Plumbing is any system that conveys fluids for a wide range of applications. Heating and cooling, waste removal, and potable water delivery are among the most common uses for plumbing however plumbing's not limited to these applications.1 Plumbing utilizes pipes, valves, plumbing fixtures, tanks, and other apparatuses to convey fluids.2 Trades that work with plumbing such as boilermakers, plumbers, and pipefitters are referred to the plumbing trade. In the Developed world plumbing infrastructure is critical for public health and sanitation.
The word derives from the Latin plumbum for lead, as the first effective pipes used in Roman era were lead pipes
Drain - about safety
In some systems the drain is for discharge of waste fluids, such as the drain in a sink in which the water is drained when it is no longer needed.
In the United Kingdom, plumbers refer to waste water as 'bad water'. This is under the premise that the water they are moving from one area to another via the use of a drain is not needed and can be removed from the area, like a 'bad apple' being removed from a fruit bowl.
In other systems, such as fountains or swimming pools where waste fluid is recirculated, the drain is the input to the recirculating pumping machine.
In the last case, there is an obvious safety issue, because many people do not expect to encounter more than the head of water above the drain when touching a drain. For example, in a recent case, a lifeguard went to the bottom of a pool to retrieve something and his hand got stuck because of the extra pressure from the pump. When there is a recirculating pump, the risk of suction consists of the head of water, plus the suction of the pump (up to a maximum of 1 atmosphere).