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Fly-tipping cost local authority over £21k but only £2,700 worth of fines issued

16 Apr 2024 2 minute read
Image: Wrexham Council

Liam RandallLocal Democracy Reporter

Fly-tipping cost one local authority more than £21,500 last year – but only £2,700 worth of fines were issued, according to the latest figures.

In 2021, Wrexham Council bought covert cameras to help crack down on the issue by deploying them in hotspot locations, with signs also put up to deter offenders.

Anyone found responsible for fly-tipping in the county borough can be issued with a fixed penalty notice of up to £400.

When asked to comment on the latest figures, which were published under the Freedom of Information Act, the council’s deputy leader said its focus was on preventing incidents from occurring rather than issuing fines.

Fly-tipping in Wrexham – Image: Wrexham Council

‘Irresponsible’

Cllr David A Bithell, who is also the authority’s climate champion, said: “Fly tipping blights our communities and both the council and volunteers across Wrexham try really hard to combat irresponsible people especially when we have three recycling centres open across Wrexham.

“As per the agreed protocol, there is a monthly analysis of all fly tipping reports received by Wrexham Council.

“Prevention is better than cure as it reduces our clean-up costs burden, as well as negating any legal cost implications in prosecuting offenders.

“Where placing signs or a camera results in a reduction or even elimination of fly tipping, it is considered a success as the aim is to reduce or stop fly tipping actually occurring rather than prosecute people.”

He added: “If there are a number of reports of fly tipping at a given location, the site is assessed for signage.

“If fly tipping continues at the location after signs are placed then the site is assessed to see if it is appropriate to site a camera.”

Cllr Bithell said the council had to consider legislation such as the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) before deploying cameras.

He added: “Fly tipping warning signs have been placed at a number of sites and these have been regularly monitored.

“We have, and will continue to prosecute fly tippers, and recover costs, however it’s not always possible to identify fly tippers for the purpose of prosecution.”


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L. Edwards
L. Edwards
1 month ago

My only vehicle is a Transporter. ( Big dogs and harps don’t fit together in a supermini and there are health reasons.) I don’t mind having to book in to go to a recycling site. But now I am only allowed one appointment a month, I have to list exactly what I am bringing and how much, and I can’t take anything big “like a television or a mattress”. I understand the need to prevent free use of the sites by commercials. But I’ve nobody to ask to help with an alternative. I’m not about to fly tip, but I… Read more »

Jeff
Jeff
1 month ago

Wifi/phone network trail cams are a few hundred quid tops. Come on councils. Live stream, even if they nick the camera.

Ap Kenneth
Ap Kenneth
1 month ago

Wrexham got the cameras, eventually in August 2021 but by September 2023 had deployed one camera, once! (https://www.wrexham.com/news/only-one-deployment-of-a-fly-tipping-camera-after-saga-to-acquire-covert-surveillance-equipment-239617.html)
Is that the definition of useless?

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