There has been a spate of fly-tipping around the village of late. What’s to be done?
You have probably noticed the recent incidents of fly-tipping around the village. Along Tuttington Road a friendly passer-by has deposited some used paint cans. Further down the road, where it joins the A140, there is part of a divan bed.
Seeing these thoughtless deposits infuriates most of us. Apart from its unsightliness, who knows what dangers lurk within? There is the possibility of finding asbestos, toxic chemicals or even dangerous medical waste. So is fly-tipping on the increase? Who’s responsibility is it to clear it up? Can we do anything to lessen these incidents?
In 2016, Broadland District Council (BDC) claimed that due to their Zero Tolerance policy “Fly-Tipping has fallen dramatically over the last year.”
But, since charges for leaving DIY waste were increased at Norfolk County Council-controlled recycling centres in April 2018, the number of visits to these centres has dramatically declined and fly-tipping incidents have increased. Attempts to reverse the council policy have so far been unsuccessful but the situation is apparently still under review.
So who is responsible for fly-tipped waste – apart, that is, from the tippers themselves? Sadly, it is the land-owner who bears the brunt of the cost and effort to remove the waste, and this is often the farming community in our area. The Environment Agency and the local authority can advise on disposal and they will become directly involved if the amount of waste is large or contains toxic materials. Land-owners can also be advised by the local authority on how to reduce the risk of being fly-tipped.
If the fly-tipped waste has become a hazard, the police could also get involved. There are often clues left in the waste to track down a perpetrator and criminal prosecutions can follow. The landowner – if he or she is lucky – can attempt to get financial redress from those prosecuted.
So what do members of the public do when confronted with fly-tipped waste in and around the village? First, be cautious. If there is any suspicion of it being hazardous, contact the Environment Agency. If it’s on public land or highways, report it to Broadland District Council. If it’s been dumped on your private land and is small in quantity, it’s probably down to you. If you see someone fly-tipping tell Broadland District Council, or call the Police by phone on 101.