Fly-tipping crisis deepens

Government statistics indicate that the number of fly-tipping incidents has gone up. How could this affect your business?

Figures published by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) reveal that the number of fly-tipping cases has increased 4% on the previous year. In 2015/16 councils across England reported 936,090 cases and the clean-up bill came in at just under £50 million.

A third of all incidents consisted of material which would fill a small van. Plus, much of the waste was deemed hazardous – many loads included asbestos-containing materials.

It is not only the councils’ problem; many others are having to pay out significant amounts to clear material dumped on their land. Farmers in particular are being hit hard. Because their land is often out of sight, it’s a prime target for waste criminals.

The Environment Agency (EA) has made catching fly-tippers a priority. In 2015/16 it dealt with 125 major fly-tipping cases. These included six incidents of dumped asbestos and eleven large-scale tyre dumps. However, the EA is the first to admit that it’s still playing catch-up with the waste criminals.

With waste disposal costs increasing it might be tempting to accept a “deal” from someone to get rid of your waste, but they will almost certainly be disposing of your waste material illegally. This could result in you facing criminal charges.

Companies are advised not to make their premises an easy target. All businesses should make sure that all gates are locked at night, waste containers are secured, CCTV cameras, etc. are visible.

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