All householders – a category that includes both tenants and owner/occupiers – have a legal responsibility to dispose of their waste through authorised channels. This responsibility is laid out in the government document Waste Duty of Care Code of Practice. Householders who breached this code could previously only be fined after being prosecuted in court. Legislation agreed in November, and due to become law this year, means that people who are caught disposing of their waste irresponsibly may be issued with Fixed Penalty Notices featuring fines of up to £400.
Householders who wish to dispose of their waste have three lawful options:
- Council kerbside collection. The exact provision of this varies by region, but all councils have a duty to collect certain kinds of non-hazardous household waste.
- Recycling centres. Householders may transport their own waste for disposal at council-administered or privately-run recycling centres.
- Licensed waste carriers. For example, a friendly and reasonably-priced skip hire company who will ensure that 90% of your waste is recycled.
On the whole, householders are law-abiding people who wouldn’t dream of fly-tipping their waste. But some who are trying to save money by hiring an unlicensed waste disposal carrier may not realise that this is exactly what is happening to their waste.
Fixed Penalty Notices
Under the new legislation, householders who are identified from their fly-tipped waste can be issued with fixed penalty notice fines of up to £400. Following a consultation, the fine has been deliberately fixed at a price that is significantly higher than the cost of hiring a licensed waste carrier. Householders who dispute the fine or refuse to pay, may end up facing even costlier court proceedings.
The unlicensed carriers specifically responsible for the fly-tipping can still be separately prosecuted for that offence – although, as we have reported before, successful prosecutions for fly-tipping are woefully low in Norfolk. It is to be hoped that these might increase as a result of householders that are aggrieved at receiving a Fixed Penalty Notice informing on the carriers who have illegally dumped their waste.
Don’t be fooled by the cheap prices offered by unlicensed waste removal firms. They are despoiling our countryside and councils and landowners are footing the bill for the clean-up. And you might end up with a hefty fine.
If you are within our catchment area and would like to dispose of some waste with a firm that will ensure that it is disposed of responsibly, please don’t hesitate to give us a call on 01493 668118 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.