£75 fine for litter louts

In a crackdown on the amount of rubbish on roadside verges, Wealden District Council is encouraging you to report vehicles when you see litter being thrown out of windows.

Since the 1st April if litter is dropped from a vehicle, the owner can be issued with a fine of £75 even if items are thrown from their vehicles by somebody else.  Up until now, Wealden District Council has had to prove the identity of the person discarding the litter, which is almost impossible to witness in a moving vehicle.

Councillor Ann Newton, the Cabinet member with responsibility for landscape protection, said:

For too long drivers and passengers travelling through the District have thrown litter out of vehicles, thinking they can speed out of reach.  Not anymore.

We will be making full use of new powers strengthening the Environmental Protection Act to bring the culprits to justice and make them pay for the environmental damage they do.  The new regulations allow local councils to fine the registered keeper of the vehicle if litter is thrown from it.

The new powers, which were previously only available to councils in London, are welcomed as a positive deterrent to the issue of litter on the roadsides of Wealden.

Councillor Newton added:

A substantial amount of Council Tax is spent each year to try to keep Wealden’s verges clean, but as quick as it is cleared, it reappears.  It is something we all notice, especially at spring time, when the evenings become lighter.

Much of the District has benefited from litter picking efforts of our local communities who took part in the Great Wealden Spring Clean last month. We want to keep our District looking good.

With the ownership of dash cams on the increase the footage can provide the incriminating evidence.  The Council is asking everyone to help.  If you see litter being tossed from a vehicle, please get in touch with the Council’s Street Scene Team immediately on 01892 602735 or by emailing street.scene@wealden.gov.uk, with details of where and when the offence occurred, what was deposited and the registration and details of the vehicle involved.

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