200 flytippers in just three months – but only a handful face a fine
More than 200 instances of flytipping in West Suffolk have been reported in just three months it has emerged – but just a handful of people have been brought to justice.
West Suffolk Council reported that in the three months up to July there were 200 reports of flytipping in its district - an increase of 86 for the same period last year.
According to data published for the council's performance and audit scrutiny committee this week, 141 of those were the size of a small van or Transit van load.
A further 59 were the size of a car boot load.
But despite the soaring numbers of reports, just three fines were issued and two people prosecuted.
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Council chiefs say that they will take action on flytippers, with the increased number representing greater awareness of the problem.
Councillor Peter Stevens, cabinet member for operations, said: "We combat the dreadful effect of fly tipping by working with the trade and the community. "We actively raise awareness of how local people can report flytips so we can investigate and clear up, and we're confident that the figures we have published show this improvement, and not an increase in actual events.
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"We also work proactively to reduce breaches of legislation, for example with duty of care inspections where businesses are asked to demonstrate how they dispose of waste generated though their activities.
"Every flytipping report we receive is investigated to try to identify those at fault and bring them to account.
"The vast majority of incidents are smaller amounts of household waste dumped in residential areas, more likely to be caused by a resident than a tradesperson.
"We use a range of sanctions. We can interview under caution, issue fixed penalty notices and recently we have had two successful prosecutions."
Committee data said there were 389 interventions over the same three month period. Of those, 154 were proactive while 183 investigations were carried out.
Those investigations resulted in 47 warning letters and three fixed penalty notices being issued.
The council said it was working with other borough and district councils on a countywide campaign to raise awareness for flytipping.