Action demanded over fly-tipping in Sheffield after nearly 12,000 cases reported in one year
More must be done to tackle fly-tipping in Sheffield this winter, it has been warned, as it emerged there were nearly 12,000 reported cases across the city in one year.
Families clearing out their homes to make space for Christmas presents, and illegally dumping packaging from gifts, may contribute to a seasonal spike in the scourge, an expert claimed.
Sheffield already has the UK's 12 highest incidence of fly-tipping, with 11,700 cases reported across the city in 2015/16, the latest government figures show.
Harsha Rathnayake, chief executive of the waste consultancy firm JunkHunters.co.uk, says the problem could peak next month as households seek to dispose of the rubbish accumulated over Christmas.
He believes many people and businesses have the impression council services across the country are patchy and sometimes expensive when it comes to disposing of large items like unwanted sofas and fridges.
He called on Sheffield Council and other local authorities to do more to assure people they can cope with the waste being produced, so they do not resort to dumping it illegally.
"There is a real concern within the industry that more needs to be done to tackle fly-tipping," he said.
"We have found that many people believe it’s too troublesome to rely upon the council to dispose of large items and the danger is a growing number will choose to just dump them somewhere illegally.
"Across the autumn and in the months leading up to Christmas and the New Year I would like to see more assurance being given to households that their local authorities are able to meet their waste disposal needs."
The 11,700 reports of fly-tipping in Sheffield during 2015/16 was less than a fifth of the nearly 71,000 recorded in Enfield, in London.
It was also below the amount reported in other big cities like Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Birmingham.
Sheffield Council recently told how it was cracking down on fly-tipping by impounding vans believed to have been used for the crime.
It also warned members of the public it was their responsibility to ensure their waste was being lawfully disposed of if they employed a private firm.
WHAT IS BEING FLY-TIPPED IN SHEFFIELD?
Animal carcasses: 7
Green waste: 495
Vehicle parts: 37
White goods: 583
Other electrical items: 341
Clinical waste: 6
Construction/demolition waste: 347
Commercial black bags: 35
Household black bags: 1,244