Figures show fly-tipping is costing councils hundreds of thousands

Waste dumped in Mill Lane on Portsdown Hill
Waste dumped in Mill Lane on Portsdown Hill

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The true extent of the scourge of fly-tipping can be revealed following a reported increase in incidents in four out of six council areas.

Figures show a rise from 4,309 reports to 5,418 across the News area.

The costs of clearing up dumped waste has grown to £305,712 – up from £295,183 the year before.

Enforcement and clean-up costs combined total nearly £400,000, the estimated expenditure figures show.

Fareham Borough Council has seen a rise of more than 1,000 incidents, but insists this is due to better recording of fly-tipping, not an increase in the problem.

Bosses at Fareham said the rise happened as they now record all fly-tipping, not just incidents reported by residents.

Of the 5,418 reports, 134 were branded as ‘significant’ in 2016/17, down from 138 the previous year.

Councillor Robert New, cabinet member for environment at the city council, said the authority was committed to tackling the problem.

He said: ‘Clamping down on fly-tippers remains a key priority for us.’

He added: ‘We investigate and gain evidence before issuing someone with a fixed penalty notice or prosecution.

‘The number of fixed penalty notices issued and prosecutions carried out for fly-tipping in 2016-17 increased, which shows how committed we are to taking action.’

A Fareham council spokeswoman said that fly-tipping was on a ‘downward turn’ when looking at 18 months’ worth of data.

She added: ‘Although fly tipping is not on the increase in Fareham, we are still working hard towards reducing it further.’

A Havant council spokesman said: ‘By far the majority of fly-tipping in Havant is single items of domestic goods i.e. fridges and furniture, green waste or small deposits of rubble which do not offer investigative opportunities. There have been four incidents which could be described as “substantial” and these were demolition materials.

‘As a result HBC has recently run the “man with a scam” campaign to warn householders of their duty of care in relation to their waste and reminding them of the need to check waste carriers licences for anyone paid to remove waste from their property.

‘During 2016 HBC also dealt with 639 abandoned vehicles and issued 1,856 fixed penalty notices for other littering offences.’

COUNCILS battling to clear up fly-tipping are forking out huge sums.

Analysis by The News of the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs figures for 2016/17 show investigation costs for councils were:

Fareham: £32,967, up from £11,715

Gosport: £17,523, up from £12,573

Havant: £3,153, down from £37,290

Portsmouth: £34,584, down from £34,815

East Hampshire spent nothing, down from £66

Winchester: £957, up from £759

Clear-up costs for councils were:

Fareham: £66,002, up from £20,007

Gosport: £28,485, up from £24,995

Havant: £46,910, up from £43,687

Portsmouth: £33,910, down from £48,993

East Hampshire: £52,610, down from £67,945

Winchester: £77,795 down from £89,556.

Number of incidents:

Portsmouth: Drop from 1,099 last year to 1,048

Fareham: 1,387, up from 325

Havant: 945, down from 1,130

Gosport: 554, up from 500

East Hampshire: 676, up from 509

Winchester City Council: 808, up from 746