£585,000 flytipping cost to taxpayers

Flytipping happens every hour of every day in Norfolk and costs more than half a million pounds to clear up, according to the latest figures.

Flytipping happens every hour of every day in Norfolk and costs more than half a million pounds to clear up, according to the latest figures.

As National Flytipping Week starts on Monday, it has emerged that there were 10,443 incidents in Norfolk from March last year to February this year - more than one an hour, every day of the year, and far more than in neighbouring Suffolk. It cost Norfolk taxpayers £585,000 to clear up, plus extra costs involved in investigating it.

There are more than 3,000 cases a year in Suffolk, and Waveney alone spends around £60,000 a year clearing the rubbish up.

The maximum fine for those who get caught is now £50,000. In Norfolk, the Environment Agency has got together with councils, police and the fire service to create the Norfolk Waste Enforcement Group, which investigates flytipping and takes action against those responsible.

In Yarmouth, residents in areas affected are being offered hidden CCTV cameras to film flytippers in action. The council also works with those who already have CCTV to prosecute those who are caught on camera, and is buying new camera equipment to cover areas where it cannot use its existing cameras. Gorleston businesses are currently being checked to make sure that they have a certificate to prove their waste is being disposed of correctly, with Yarmouth companies next on the list. The council also runs free collection days for bulky waste.

Norwich City Council has hidden cameras in place at flytipping hot spots to help to increase the conviction rate.

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A city council spokesman said: “Flytipping creates an eyesore. It shows a complete lack of respect for the environment and the effect it has on others. On average Norwich City Council deals with around 300 fly-tipping incidents a month or about 4,500 a year, at a cost of around £100,000.”

Breckland Council is also starting to bring prosecutions using new powers given to councils, and last week Delroy Duhaney, of Norwich Road, Watton, was ordered to do 100 hours' community service and pay £412 costs after admitting flytipping household waste in Swaffham.

Meanwhile Waveney District Council is vowing to crack down on flytipping after gas canisters dumped at a boatyard in Oulton Broad led to 25 homes having to be evacuated for four hours on Thursday. Earlier this month the council prosecuted two men, in a separate case, for dumping a van load of household waste on Flixton Marsh Lane, a private road in Blundeston, near Lowestoft. David Lucey, of Carrel Road, Gorleston, and Andrew Billman, Townsend Way, Lowestoft, pleaded guilty and were told to pay £250 between them in fines and costs.

David Porter, Waveney's environmental health officer, said: “Flytipping in the district costs taxpayers around £1,000 every week. It is expensive to investigate and to clear up. It is unsightly, attracts vermin, pollutes water courses, can cause a fire hazard and, in the case of hazardous wastes, can pose a serious threat to human health and wildlife.”