Fly-tipping stunt in St Albans centre
- Credit: Archant
A pile of rubbish was left in the city centre as part of a fly-tipping awareness stunt arranged by the authorities.
The Hertfordshire Fly-tipping Group (FTG) today left a sofa, mattress, fridge and other waste strewn across St Peter’s Street to raise awareness of new anti-fly-tipping campaign SCRAP.
FTG is a collaboration between St Albans district council (SADC), Herts police, Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service, the Environment Agency, the National Farmers Union, charity Keep Britain Tidy, and Herts county council.
Sgt Jordon Fox was at the scene of the fake fly-tip: “We are trying to raise awareness that people are responsible for where their rubbish goes.
“There are genuine people who have done everything they can and it still ends up that way but it is people who make no effort that we will prosecute, because it affects the whole community.”
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He said fly-tipping creates environmental issues, taxpayer expense, and inconvenience to the community.
District Cllr Beric Read added: “It is important to get across that you are responsible for your waste. Just handing it over to somebody else doesn’t count, you are still responsible.
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“So be careful you are dealing with respectable businesspeople who are collecting your waste.”
He said the stunt was similar to police putting a crashed car by the side of a dangerous road.
Portfolio holder for environment at SADC, Daniel Chichester-Miles, said: “Fly-tips are unsightly and damage the environment in which we live. This applies to piles of waste dumped in a country lane or unwanted items left in black plastic bags outside a charity shop or next to a litter bin.
“We all have a duty of care to dispose of our waste responsibly. If your waste is found in fly tip and it’s traced back to you, you could end up being prosecuted or fined.”
St Albans Ch Insp Shane O’Neill said: “This publicity stunt raised awareness and got everyone talking.
“Fly-tipping is a problem in the St Albans district, as it is across the country. When people don’t take pride in their community, we often find pockets of anti-social behaviour.
“Working together, we can put a stop to this, but we need you to call us if you see anyone acting suspiciously around known dumping grounds, and please make sure you dispose of your own waste properly, so you don’t face fines or prosecution.”
SADC’s head of community services, Joe Tavernier, and principal community protection officer Neil Kieran were also on hand at the fake fly-tip to answer any questions from the public.
The new SCRAP initiative is based on an acronym to remind people of their obligations when deposing of waste:
• Suspect all waste carriers until they provide proof they are legitimate.
• Check their registration details, then verify them on 03708 506 506.
• Refuse unsolicited offers of waste disposal.
• Ask for evidence it will be correctly disposed of.
• Paperwork, including an invoice and receipt, should be obtained.
Anyone who spots fly-tipping taking place should contact police on 999. Anything discovered afterwards should be reported to SADC on 01727 809019 or on firstname.lastname@example.org