City of Wolverhampton Council has placed CCTV cameras in key areas in the city and there has been a clear reduction in the crime in the 2 first hotspot streets identified for the action.
Before cameras were installed, the council’s environmental services team saw 160 items of rubbish dumped in the streets, in the St Peter’s area of the city, during the period November 2021 to January 2022.
But following the launch of the crackdown, the most recent figures show there were 47 items dumped in the same streets from the period November 2022 to January 2023.
Incidents of fly tipping tend to spike in the city on the run up to Christmas and during the festive break, so the impact is even more significant.
Offenders in the hotspot streets were identified through CCTV footage and 3 fixed penalty notices (FPNs) were issued and paid. Money will be reinvested in the council’s environmental service.
The council launched the targeted crackdown after evidence showed that a lot of fly tipping in the city is carried out by individuals on foot rather than in vehicles where registration plates can be easily identified and traced. For this reason, CCTV and resident support is key to bringing offenders to justice.
Cameras were installed last year in the hotspots and in December the council also began sharing images of fly tipping offenders on lampposts to appeal for information to help identify the culprits.
If offenders cannot be identified from camera footage, residents are then encouraged to ‘Shop a Tipper’ where the information they provide could see them receive a £100 reward following the payment of a FPN or a successful prosecution.
Councillor Steve Evans, City of Wolverhampton Council’s cabinet member for city environment and climate change, said: “The crackdown began in 2 key streets where persistent offending has been carried out by a small minority of residents. We know they live locally, so we wanted to display their images where the issue is happening and let them know we have caught them committing a crime.
“It’s fantastic to see that our efforts to tackle this disgusting and thoughtless crime are paying off. I'm aware we have some way to go, but we will not stop here and we will be using a combination of CCTV and posters in other areas of our city to continue identifying and penalising those who blight our communities.
“People are dumping their rubbish and just expecting someone else to deal with it. This is clearly not acceptable. Tipped rubbish can be dangerous, it causes pollution and costs Wolverhampton taxpayers more than £260,000 per year to clean up.
“Unfortunately, fly tipping is a national issue and Wolverhampton is by no means different to the rest of the country. But what we want to do is build on this successful work and make a difference for our residents.”
In total, 36 FPNs were issued across the city for fly tipping in 2022 and as part of the campaign, residents living in hotspot areas have been written to with advice on how they can dispose of their waste legally.
All residents are reminded they can walk into Household Waste and Recycling Centres (tips) and dispose of their rubbish free of charge. HWRCs are open 7 days a week from 8am to 4pm. Centres are at Anchor Lane, Lanesfield, Bilston and Shaw Road, Wolverhampton.
A bulky item collection service to dispose of big unwanted items is also available, find out more at Bulky item collection.