Fly-tipping is the term used to describe waste illegally dumped on land. This can range from a single black rubbish bag to multiple loads of construction waste.
We treat fly tipping very seriously and will prosecute anyone caught. You can report fly-tipping to us online:
Fly-tipping and the Law
We all have a legal obligation (or duty of care) to ensure our household or business waste is disposed of correctly. You could face prosecution and an unlimited fine if your waste ends up fly tipped by someone else.
Remember, if it’s your waste, it’s your responsibility.
It is important to realise that offences can be committed by others before the fly-tip, such as permitting or causing the fly-tip, and the sanctions are the same as doing the fly-tipping:
- Anyone giving permission for fly-tipping to occur on land they control will be open to investigation and prosecution.
- Anyone giving waste to a another person for disposal without checking a) whether that person is authorised to carry waste b) where the waste is going and the waste is subsequently fly-tipped, will be open to investigation and prosecution for causing the fly-tipping.
- Fly-tipping is often associated with dumping waste from vehicles. In this case the person controlling the use of the vehicle, normally the registered keeper, can also be prosecuted. This means that it is possible for a prosecution to occur when only the vehicle, not the driver, is identifiable.
The best way to stop organised fly tipping is to make sure that only authorised waste carriers take your waste away. Follow the S.C.R.A.P. code:
- Suspect all waste carriers; do not let them take your waste until they have proven themselves to be legitimate. A professional waste carrier should happily answer reasonable questions.
- Check their waste carrier’s registration details, then verify them by searching the Environment Agency website. Note down the registration number of the vehicle used to take your waste away.
- Refuse unexpected offers to have any rubbish taken away. If you do not trust that someone who you have spoken to will be disposing of waste legally, report their vehicle registration and name to the Environment Agency.
- Ask what will happen to your rubbish and seek evidence that it is going to be disposed of appropriately.
- Paperwork should be obtained. Make sure you get a proper invoice, waste transfer note or a receipt for your waste removal. This should give a description of the waste and provide the waste carrier’s contact details.
For more details see the Let's S.C.R.A.P. Fly-tipping leaflet at the bottom of this page.
Jane, one of our Environmental Crime Officers, explains in this video how you can help prevent fly-tipping.
What else can you do with your waste?
- Use your kerbside waste and recycling collection
- Use your Neighbourhood Recycling Bank or Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC)
- Use our bulky waste collection service
- Sell or donate your unwanted items
Let's SCRAP Fly Tipping!
We support the Let's S.C.R.A.P. Fly Tipping campaign co-ordinated by the Hertfordshire Fly Tipping Group - a multi-agency task force working together to combat fly tipping.
The group is made up of: Hertfordshire’s local authorities, Hertfordshire Constabulary, Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner, Hertfordshire Fire & Rescue, the Environment Agency, the National Farmers’ Union, Hertfordshire’s Community Safety Partnerships and Keep Britain Tidy.
Did you witness fly-tipping?
If you witness fly-tipping or fly tipped rubbish, any information that you can provide will greatly assist us in our fight against this illegal activity.
To assist investigations it would be helpful if you could record as much detail as possible and report it immediately. All information is valuable to us and will be treated confidentially. You can take photos (e.g. on a smartphone), however please DO NOT touch the waste, disturb the evidence or remove any evidence from site.
Remember: stay safe, do not approach any individuals and do not put yourself in danger.
David, an Environmental Crime Officer, explains in this video what to do if you come across a fly-tip:
Take note of:
- Date and time that you saw the fly-tippers in action or discovered the rubbish
- Location of the incident - address or local landmarks
- A description of the rubbish e.g. builders rubble
- How many people did you see, can you describe them?
- Was there a vehicle involved - make / model / colour / registration number?
- Where were you when you saw the fly-tipping: what kind of view did you have? how far away were you? weather and light conditions
The Environment Agency has a statutory responsibility to investigate the larger scale fly-tipping incidences where the waste may pose a serious risk to the environment and where the activity is linked to organised crime. Contact the Environment Agency incident hotline on tel: 0800 80 70 60