Whilst you might not be fly-tipping yourself (we hope not) there is a distinct possibility that you are living next to, or close to, someone who doesn’t care about the law and just wants to make sure their rubbish is no longer on their property, or just wants to dump waste in a back yard and forget about it.
So what to do about it?
Firstly a reminder about current waste services.
We currently have household bin collections, and fortnightly collections for recyclable materials, as laid down by NELC. The council also have the brown bin garden waste scheme at an annual fee of around £35.00.
There are two local waste disposal sites (tips), one at King’s Road, Immingham, and the other off Gilbey Road, in Grimsby, which can be used for disposing of a wide range of waste. These are currently open again but with a range of restrictions in place (details here), so it is possible once again to dispose of waste.
The council also offer a pay for service for bulkier items at fixed rated prices.
Don’t forget to register your vehicle with them first before the disappointment of being turned away with a full load.
Any waste disposed of inappropriately is fly-tipped and is a crime. You’ll have no doubt seen old mattresses, chairs, sofas, settees, and other larger items lying around in alleyways!
Our council have already stated that they will endeavour to trace any type of recorded materials within black bags or similar to trace where the waste has come from and prove ownership ready for a prosecution.
There is very detailed information on the NELC website explaining everything you need to know about flytipping and enforcement. Visit it here.
Putting it in context
Remember that fly-tipping is a national problem. Here’s some interesting statistics :
For the 2018/19 year, local authorities in England dealt with over 1 million (1,072,000) fly-tipping incidents, an increase of 8% from the 998,000 reported in 2017/18.
Nearly two thirds (62%) of fly-tips involved household waste. Total incidents involving household waste increased by 2% from 2017/18.
Consistent with previous years, the most common place for fly-tipping to occur was on highways (pavements and roads), which accounted for almost half (46%) of total incidents in 2018/19. The number of highway incidents has increased by 6% from 2017/18.
As in the last few years, the most common size category for fly-tipping incidents in 2018/19 was equivalent to a ‘small van load’ (33% of total incidents), followed by the equivalent of a ‘car boot or less’ (30%).
In 2018/19, 36,000 or 3% of total incidents were of ‘tipper lorry load’ size or larger, which is similar to 2017/18. For these large fly-tipping incidents, the cost of clearance to local authorities in England in 2018/19 was £12.9 million, compared with £12.2 million in 2017/18.
Local authorities carried out 499,000 enforcement actions in 2018/19, an increase of 5,000 actions (1%) from 2017/18.
The number of fixed penalty notices issued has continued to increase, up 11% to 76,000 in 2018/19. This is the second most common action (after investigations), and accounted for 15% of all actions in 2018/19.
For 2018/19, 12,000 (16%) of fixed penalty notices were issued specifically for small scale fly-tipping, 37,000 (48%) in relation to littering and 26,000 (35%) in relation to other offences.
The number of fines issued increased by 6% to 2,052 in 2018/19, with the value of total fines increasing to £1,090,000 (an increase of 29% on the £843,000 total value of fines in 2017/18).
It’s a national issue! But it’s also very local to us as it’s around our homes and communities too. So let’s all play a part in tackling it.
Homeowners disposing of waste are responsible for ensuring it is disposed of legally. So if you hire a service to remove waste for a fee (someone selected through Facebook maybe) then you are personally responsible for ensuring that they hold a current waste carrier’s license, issued and in date by NELC. You are responsible for ensuring that service will not go on to dump that waste – which can potentially be traced back.
This is an important message to share. Read more about responsibility here.
Alleyways and properties
Back alleyways – the legal responsibility is for each homeowner to be legally obliged for the direct rear outside of their property if gated access is available.
Draw an imaginary line halfway across the alley way and extend that back to the fence-lines / borders each side of your home – that is your responsibility if you OWN the property. I put “OWN” deliberately, as tenants are not the ultimate responsible person, although they could be fined as the culprits as dumpers of any goods into alleys or streets.
If you are a buy to let styled owner of a property, what have you placed into your rental terms and conditions for tenant conditions in regards to waste?
You cannot move the ultimate responsibility over to the tenant, as you are obliged to make regular property inspections to ensure that your terms and conditions are being met.
A big problem with current fines and prosecutions is that so many owners of rental property do not reside in North East Lincolnshire but have bought properties at auctions, and just want maximum rental with minimum fuss and bother.
Report flytipping incidents to the Council.
You’ll need to report as much information as you can about the incident.
The day, date, location and time that the incident occurred
A description of the person dumping the waste
If they arrived in a vehicle, a description of the vehicle and the registration number
If they are on foot, details of their address if you saw them leave a house or business property
A description of the waste dumped e.g. fridge, garden waste, black bags etc.
How far away you were when the incident occurred
What kind of view you had
Or simply ensure you report waste you spot so that the Council can arrange clearance.
Do not disturb or interfere with the waste; both for your own safety and to ensure that enforcement evidence is not disturbed.
There is a national body that tries to tackle fly-tipping. So if it’s a particular issue for your area maybe there is something in their guidance that is interesting.
Please help everyone to keep our streets, alleys and environment free of pollution – which is what flytipped rubbish is. It’s unattractive and can attract vermin too.
Neighbourhood Watch Groups have the possibility to spread the word about waste and fly tipping, so let’s work together to make streets cleaner.
Make sure you understand about fly-tipping and how to report it and ensure information is shared around your Neighbourhood Watch area.