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Saturday, December 9, 2023

Fly tippers caught on CCTV

Hundreds of people have been caught dumping waste thanks to a new array of anti-fly tipping cameras.

And many have either been prosecuted, fined or are awaiting their punishment.

In the past three years 137 cameras have been installed at 78 different fly tipping and littering hot spots across the Bradford District in a bid to clamp down on the problem.

Since April 2021 almost 600 people have been caught through the CCTV system, and enforcement action has been started against 500 of these tippers.

A new report on fly tipping in the District has revealed that in the 2021/22 financial year 5,186 tonnes of fly tipped waste and litter was collected by Bradford Council following 9,700 incidents.

Members of the Council’s Regeneration and Environment Scrutiny Committee will be given a presentation on work being done to tackle the fly tipping blight at a meeting on Tuesday.

They will hear that the new CCTV system has already caught hundreds of offenders in the act.

Bradford Council allocated £150,000 for new cameras to stop fly tipping in early 2021.

In 2021/22 these cameras caught 129 people either littering or fly tipping.

Since April last year the cameras have caught a further 453.

Enforcement action, including fines and court prosecutions, have either been carried out or begun against 500 people due to this CCTV evidence.

Figures show that Bradford has the highest level of fly tipping in Yorkshire, and has the 37th highest level nationally – down from 36th the previous year.

The report going before members on Tuesday says: “The more extensive use of CCTV has resulted in an increase in fly tipping and littering fixed penalty notices being issued and also contributed to the number of vehicles being seized.”

Members will be told that the area of the District with the most cameras is Bradford city centre, with 29.

There are 21 cameras in Bowling and Barkerend, 18 in Great Horton and 17 in Manningham.

Other areas with cameras include Shipley (5), Bradford Moor (4), Keighley (8) and Queensbury (6).

The report says that while some offenders are being prosecuted, this can be costly and time consuming. It adds: “Where individuals are identified, the team will look to issue fixed penalty notices, issue formal cautions or prosecute for the most serious offences.

“Prosecutions can be lengthy, resource intensive and costly and since their introduction in 2019, the preferred enforcement option for fly-tipping has been to issue fixed penalty notices.”

The committee will also hear how the Council recently worked with West Yorkshire Police on a “sting” operation to track down fly tippers who advertise themselves as legitimate waste removal companies on social media.

A prosecution relating to this sting is expected shortly.

The report says: “This year the Environmental Enforcement Team and Operation Steerside worked in partnership in a sting operation to stop the criminal activities of a prolific fly tipper.

“The fly tipper had been caught on camera using a van to dump large amounts of waste in at six locations across Bradford.

“The person was advertising on social media as a responsible and legitimate waste removal business vehicle but was deceiving members of the public by offering to take waste for a fee and then dumping the waste illegally.

“Checks revealed that the van had no registered keeper and could not be located. Officers from the Environmental Enforcement Team set up a sting operation and contacted the waste operator via social media to collect waste from a location in Bradford.

“On arrival the person was stopped by the Police and the vehicle was seized by the Environmental Enforcement Team.

“Persons in connection with the business have now been interviewed and a prosecution is pending.

“In 2022/23 the team have seized 10 vehicles involved in flytipping and the team will continue to work with the Police to target environmental criminals who prey on the public.”

Other District wide projects aiming to tackle fly tipping include a campaign to make of people more aware of their responsibilities to keep back streets and snickets clear of waste.

And £150,000 has been spent on work to “defend” sites that have regularly been targets of fly tippers. This has included fencing off land or blocking road access to sites.

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