The destruction of a tipper lorry involved in illegally dumping a huge amount of waste at a local beauty spot is “extremely satisfying”, says a community leader.
County Councillor Gill Heath spoke after watching the 20 tonne tipper lorry dismantled and the chassis sawn in two before it was taken to be crushed.
The lorry, seized by Police in a joint operation with the Environment Agency, was linked to an incident at Gladings Wood, Madeley Heath, in January last year when approximately 175 tonnes of non-toxic commercial waste was dumped overnight in the car park and public footpath after a locked gate was forced open.
Gill Heath, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for Communities, said:
It took us three days to remove approximately 175 tonnes of rubbish from the car park and footpath at Gladings Wood, so I’m delighted that a vehicle involved in that crime is being taken off the road permanently.
Dumping commercial waste has the potential to harm people and the environment, causes a great deal of trouble for the victims and it’s extremely frustrating that public bodies have to spend taxpayers’ money cleaning up a crime.”
An excavator loaded 15 lorries over three days to remove the waste, which included shredded paper and bandages, but no hazardous material, before Forestry Commission staff worked to remove as much of the small waste as possible.
The lorry was seized as part of a joint operation between Police and the Environment Agency, focusing on the growing number of illegal waste sites in the region. Two men in the vehicle still form part of police inquiries.
Gill Heath added:
It was extremely satisfying seeing this vehicle destroyed and I hope to see many more.
Dumping waste is a criminal offence and while local authorities, police and Environment Agency continue to work together to tackle the problem I would urge anyone who sees anything suspicious to contact the police as soon as possible.”
Mike Grimes, West Midlands Area Director for the Environment Agency, added:
This is the second vehicle destroyed this week as part of Environment Agency enforcement action.
“The seizure of these vehicles gives a clear message that the Environment Agency takes waste crime seriously and will persistently pursue those suspected of illegally dumping waste.”
Click below to see work begin on destroying the lorry.