Truck driver spills building materials onto busy road

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This is the moment police caught a driver whose van shed building materials onto a busy road.

David Phelan's tipper truck was spotted badly loaded, risking the safety of other drivers.

Building and plumbing waste including blue polythene, a piece of wood and a piece of plastic pipe had been seen falling from the vehicle while it was travelling along the A693 near Rotary Way.

Phelan, 32, of Rosslyn Avenue, Ryhope,produced a waste carrier’s licence when asked to do so by the wardens but was unable to provide receipts for the waste he was carrying.

He pleaded guilty to littering and failing to provide receipts for the waste when he appeared at Peterlee Magistrates Court.

Ian Hoult, Durham County Council’s neighbourhood protection manager, said: “Although Phelan did not intentionally dump the waste, he failed to make sure it was secure on the back of his vehicle.

“This not only caused a risk to pedestrians and other motorists but also resulted in damage to the environment, with the waste falling onto the carriageway.

“Furthermore, Phelan failed to cooperate by not providing the information required so we had no evidence that his actions were legitimate.

“These are both serious offences and it is right that we should pursue legal action.”

Phelan was issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice for littering on the day of the offence and later received a second Fixed Penalty Notice when he failed to produce waste transfer notes or receipts.

Durham County Council took court action against Phelan after he failed to pay either of the Fixed Penalty Notices. He must now pay £500.

Phelan’s solicitor told magistrates that Phelan was not an unscrupulous person and had not been flytipping the waste.

He said Phelan had been working for a firm that carried out house clearances at the time of the littering offence and the owner’s son had been in the vehicle with him. Phelan believed the other man would take care of producing the transfer notes or receipts.

It was also claimed that the receipts had been sent to the council but had been lost in the post.

Magistrates told Phelan that he had been reckless and that failing to secure the waste on the heavily loaded vehicle had caused a risk to the public.

He was fined £315 and ordered to pay £200 in costs.

For information on commercial waste disposal visit www.durham.gov.uk/commercialwaste