Fly-tipping figures rocket across Hartlepool since start of pandemic
Council chiefs have outlined plans to help reduce fly-tipping in Hartlepool after figures showed the problem has rocketed by more than a third compared to the previous year.
The Safer Hartlepool Partnership has heard at its latest meeting that there were 821 reports of fly-tipping received by the council between January and March 2021.
This is an increase of 225 from 596 compared to the same period last year and a rise of nearly 38%.
Hartlepool Council officers noted the reports include “side waste”, such as additional black bags not placed in wheelie bins, along with the “traditional” reports of large household items being dumped throughout the town.
Sylvia Pinkney, council assistant director for regulatory services, outlined how a fly-tipping working group has been formed to help tackle the issue, with a three point plan drawn up around “education, prevention and enforcement.”
Along with council representatives, the group also includes voluntary sector organisations such as The Big Town Tidy Up and Plastic Free Hartlepool.
Ms Pinkney added steps are also taking place to increase the capacity of the council’s bulky waste collection service.
This aims to reduce the waiting times for residents using the service, which involves household items being collected and disposed of correctly for a small fee.
She said: “That work has been carried out and there is now an additional team working in relation to bulky waste and the collection times in relation to that have been reduced dramatically.”
Cllr Shane Moore, council leader, speaking at the meeting, requested more work be done to help break down fly-tipping figures between “side waste” and larger household items.
He added criticisms over the issue in the town would be “mainly unjustified” with a great deal of work being done to address fly-tipping.
He said: “There will be a lot of criticism thrown certain ways, mainly unjustified in my opinion.
“In the public’s eyes they wouldn’t necessarily see side waste as fly-tipping, people regard fly-tipping as stuff that happens in the back lanes and places like that.”
Ms Pinkney added work is already taking place to provide a further breakdown.
She that the pandemic could have impacted figures.
Fly-tipping in Hartlepool can be reported online at www.hartlepool.gov.uk or by telephoning (01429) 523333.