South Hams District Council has welcomed government plans to raise fines for those who blot the landscape with fly tipping.
From 9 May, the Secretary of State has increased penalties, with a minimum fine of £150.00, up to a maximum of £400.00. In the South Hams, this is an increase of £75.00 on the minimum fine payable. Last year alone, illegal fly tipping cost Council tax payers, a massive £31,998. As well as spoiling the countryside, fly-tipping is illegal, bad for the environment and often a health hazard to people and animals.
South Hams District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Commercial Services, Cllr Rufus Gilbert, said: “I welcome the government’s decision to increase fines for those who fly tip. As a council, we can’t keep spending these huge amounts of money clearing up after irresponsible residents. We simply will not tolerate it and we will heavily fine those we catch.”
Household waste, including DIY material and electrical goods such as fridges, accounts for half of all fly tipped rubbish. South Hams District Council encourages householders to dispose of waste responsibly through reducing, reusing, recycling and composting waste, where possible.
You can dispose of your waste in a number of ways:
- ‘Normal’ household refuse and recycling should be placed out for collection the evening before, or by 7 a.m. on the morning of, your collection.
- ‘Bulky’ items and larger items of household waste can be disposed of in two ways:-
- Take these items to your closest household waste recycling centre. These are run by Devon County Council. For further information contact DCC on 0345 1551010; or
- Arrange for a bulky household waste collection. This service is operated by South Hams District Council and a small charge is made. Please visit the Council’s website for further details.
- Take glass bottles and jars to your closest recycling bank. You can find recycling banks in some South Hams Car Parks. A full list of sites is available on the Council’s website.
Some residents call on contractors for removal of larger waste items. If you choose this option, please follow these simple checks to make sure your waste is disposed of correctly and not fly tipped out of sight.
- Check that the contractor has a waste carrier’s licence. You can do this on the Environment Agency web site at: https://environment.data.gov.uk/public-register/view/search-waste-carriers-brokers
- Ask where they are going to take your waste.
- Pay on presentation of an invoice which shows the waste carrier’s licence number and details where your waste was disposed.
- Ask for a receipt and keep it safe.
Unfortunately, if a fly tip includes items tracked back to yourself, you may be liable for legal action being taken against you and you could be fined. Make sure that doesn’t happen with these simple checks.