Ernie Clark. Hilperton Division, Wiltshire Council.

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Monday May 04, 2020 Fly tipping.

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Partners working together to target fly-tippers in Wiltshire.

Wiltshire Council is increasing its partnership working with Wiltshire Police to conduct roadside checks on people carrying waste in order to disrupt and prosecute fly-tippers. These people are breaking both stay-at-home government guidance and fly-tipping laws.

During March there was no significant change in the number of fly-tipping incidents in Wiltshire, but the first three weeks of April have seen 63 extra incidents, a 30% rise in fly-tipping in the county on April 2019.

More than 50% of the reports received are commercial fly-tips, which indicates that rogue traders or a ‘man and van’ are still operating illegally, even during the lockdown.

WC has many fly-tips under investigation, including 14 cases that they are following up on and waiting to conduct interviews under caution when the Government reduce the lockdown measures.

Household Recycling Centres (HRCs) across the country remain closed as travelling to them is not considered to be essential travel. However, WC continues to monitor the government advice closely and are looking at ways in which they could safely reopen HRCs at some stage in the future, if the government guidance changes to allow this. When WC does reopen the HRCs, people can expect some significant changes at the sites in order to keep staff and residents safe, as new social distancing measures would need to be put in place.

These new arrangements are likely to include a limit on the number of people and vehicles that can enter a site and a potential reduction in materials types that people can dispose of.

However, these plans are yet to be formalised.

Whilst the HRCs are closed there is no excuse for fly-tipping. People and businesses have a duty of care under the Environmental Protection Act to ensure that they only give their waste to authorised persons, with a waste carriers licence* and can be prosecuted if their waste is fly-tipped because they did not conduct the relevant checks.

To prevent waste being fly-tipped businesses and the public need to:

• *Check that the person they are passing waste to is an authorised waste carrier by visiting https://environment.data.gov.uk/public-register/view/search-waste-carriers-brokers or calling the Environment Agency on 03708 506506.

• Check that the person who is taking the waste has an upper tier waste carriers license to take waste or scrap metal collectors licence, issued by Wiltshire Council to take any scrap a metal.

• Note the make, model and registration number of any vehicle and a description of the collectors who are taking the waste away.

• Ask for a receipt detailing where the waste is going. This is a legal obligation for businesses, but householders are also advised to request this information.

Remember, if they are taking waste for a fee it is classed as commercial waste - it’s illegal for them to use the Household Recycling Centres (HRC) which are currently closed during the pandemic (Ask yourself – where will it be going then?).

Members of the community can report fly tipping online by visiting: www.wiltshire.gov.uk/mywiltshire-online-reporting or calling 0300 456 0100. They can also report waste collectors who they suspect of being unlicensed online by visiting www.wiltshire.gov.uk/mywiltshire-online-reporting or calling 0300 456 0100.