Crackdown on dumpers
Take action now and scrap the scourge of fly tipping for good – that’s the tough message from the Bucks Waste Partnership.
It is launching a new S.C.R.A.P campaign to rid the county of dumpers who think nothing of ruining Buckinghamshire’s beautiful countryside. The message behind the campaign is that if it’s your rubbish, it’s your responsibility to dispose of it properly and legally. Otherwise dumpers face the possibility of a £400 fixed penalty notice or, if court action is taken, typically fines of several thousands of pounds, or even a jail sentence.
The campaign also features useful advice for both householders and businesses to thoroughly check anyone who they use to dispose of waste on their behalf. Failure to do so means people are not complying with duty of care requirements and they may get a nasty surprise if their waste is found fly-tipped.
The campaign title stands for Suspect, Check, Refuse, Ask and Paperwork – a five-point checklist to help people stay on the right side of the law.
Bill Chapple OBE, Bucks Waste Partnership Chairman and County Council Cabinet Member for Planning and Environment, said any form of fly-tipping was illegal and socially unacceptable.
‘Local people tell me they hate fly-tipping with a passion. It doesn’t matter if its a single bag or a truck load, fly-tipping is disgusting and on average costs our council taxpayers over £750,000 every year in clear up and enforcement costs.
‘Fly-tipped material also presents dangers for wildlife, it can pollute local areas and it’s extremely expensive to clear up. People often don’t realise but you could also end up with a criminal record.
‘We take a zero-tolerance approach and that tough stance means fly-tippers are around 16 times more likely to be caught and prosecuted in Buckinghamshire compared to the national average. Quite often it’s surveillance camera evidence or an eagle-eyed resident noting down a vehicle number plate that helps bring perpetrators to justice.
‘However, going forward we want to do even better and I am determined not to allow the mindless actions of the few, to spoil it for the people that love Buckinghamshire and its beautiful countryside.’
The campaign also reminds people that they can also play their part by reporting suspicious activity or fly-tipping in progress. All they need to do is go online to www.fixmystreet.buckscc.gov.uk and select fly-tipping from a drop-down menu.
Bucks Waste Partnership member and Cabinet Member for Environment at South Bucks District Council, Luisa Sullivan, said: ‘Some of the excuses people give are unbelievable, from promising to come back in the morning to collect a fly-tipped bag to needing to tidy out a works van. Listen to your common sense, think before you act and don’t be tempted to fly tip in the first place.
‘Even if you can’t dispose of waste yourself, there are many alternatives that won’t land you in trouble. For example, each Buckinghamshire District Council offers a bulky waste collection service for larger items or kerbside waste and recycling centres for things like glass, paper and plastic bottles.’
She added: ‘Alternatively you could consider donating or even selling your unwanted items. You might make a few pounds for yourself rather than having to pay out thousands in fines.
For further details about all aspects of the S.C.R.A.P campaign, visit: www.recycle4bucks.co.uk/flytip