No fines issued by council for flytipping despite thousands of incidents

The local authority issued only three warning letters.
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Wirral Council issued no fines for fly tipping across Wirral despite more than 3,600 incidents.

According to statistics published by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), there were 3,635 incidents of fly tipping across Wirral between April 2022 and March 2023 with most of these being either on the road or down back alleyways.

Despite investigating 2,488 incidents, the local authority issued only three warning letters in the same time period and no fixed penalty notices over the same period. The council said it “will always seek to prosecute anyone who we can prove has fly-tipped.”

Flytipping, which is the illegal disposal of household, industrial, commercial or other waste, is a serious criminal offence for which people can be prosecuted in court. It also costs Wirral Council more than an estimated £501,000 to clear up as well as more than an estimated £82,000 to investigate.

In total, this means the council spends approximately £160.54 on average clearing up each incident. If people want to dispose of waste that is too large for a bin, this can be collected for the cost of £32 per visit or people can visit one of Wirral’s rubbish tips.

Cllr Liz Grey, Chair of the Environment, Climate Emergency and Transport Committee for Wirral Council, said: “Fly-tipping is not a victimless crime, it is one we take very seriously due to the impact it has on people’s quality of life and the cost in environmental as well as financial terms.

A flytipping incident in Bebington. Image: Edward BarnesA flytipping incident in Bebington. Image: Edward Barnes
A flytipping incident in Bebington. Image: Edward Barnes

“I encourage residents to report all incidents of fly-tipping to the council at the earliest opportunity and with as much information and evidence they can provide. Reports are logged and Environmental Enforcement Officers will investigate and look for evidence linking it to an offender. They will always seek to prosecute anyone who we can prove has fly-tipped.

“Reports are also passed over immediately to Wirral’s street cleansing contractor, Biffa, to remove the waste according to priority.”