Asbestos illegally dumped 12 times in Sheffield in three years including near people's gardens

Sheffield Council revealed there have been 12 cases of fly tipping involving asbestos in the past three years including near people’s gardens.

Friday, 4th February 2022, 4:23 pm
Updated Friday, 4th February 2022, 4:53 pm

Liberal Democrat councillor Martin Smith, representative for Dore and Totley, asked the council for the figures because he is battling on behalf of constituents to get illegally dumped asbestos removed from near their gardens.

In response to his question asked at a full council meeting this week, the council said there had been 12 incidents of fly tipping involving asbestos reported to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in the past three years.

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Sheffield Council revealed there have been 12 cases of fly tipping involving asbestos in the past three years including near people’s gardens

Speaking in the meeting, Coun Smith said: “Twelve incidents of fly tipping asbestos is 12 too many, I’m sure we all agree it’s an incredibly dangerous material that needs to be cleared up as soon as possible. Particularly if the asbestos has been deposited in an area that is easily accessible to members of the public.

“There is a current example of that being dealt with by environmental services in my ward. The asbestos is very close to residents’ gardens. I won’t for reasons of confidentiality give more details here.

“Could you please contact environmental services and ensure this is resolved as quickly as possible and that waste material is taken away in a safe manner as quickly as humanly possible.”

Coun Paul Wood, co-operative executive member for waste management, said: “If you’d like to send me an email tonight, councillor Smith, I will deal with it in the morning.”

The council was asked to provide more details on where the asbestos fly-tipping was reported, when and how it was dealt with. The local democracy reporting service will report these details when the council responds.

What is asbestos and why is it dangerous?

Asbestos is a fibre-like material that was once used in buildings for insulation, flooring and roofing. It has been banned in the UK since 1999.

The NHS says while asbestos can be dangerous, it is not harmful if left alone but if the material containing asbestos is damaged it can release a fine dust that contains asbestos fibres. When these are breathed in, the asbestos fibres enter the lungs and can gradually damage them over time.

Long-term exposure to asbestos can cause a serious lung condition known as asbestosis.