Scrap metal dealer fined after van spotted dumping sofas in Sunderland street

The sofas that were dumped behind a house in Southwick Road.
The sofas that were dumped behind a house in Southwick Road.

A scrap metal dealer has been hit in the pocket after his van was spotted dumping three sofas in a Sunderland street.

The man was fined £600 for failing to produce the necessary paperwork after his van was spotted dumping the furniture behind a house in Southwick Road, Southwick.

Coun Michael Mordey

Coun Michael Mordey

Sunderland City Council's environmental enforcement team were called in to investigate after a resident took down the registration number of the transit van being used to dump the sofas and reported it to them.

When they tracked the van owner to his address, he denied depositing any waste on Southwick Road or indeed any knowledge of the items but did admit collecting scrap metal and using the vehicle for this.

As a result, he was fined for failing to produce either Waste Transfer Notes or a Waste Carrier's Licence to cover waste transported or disposed of over the last two years.

Coun Michael Mordey, Deputy Leader of Sunderland City Council, said: "It's outrageous that anyone should think it is acceptable to dump rubbish outside someone else's home, but all the more so when chances are the scrap dealer had been paid to take it away in the first place.

"We would encourage anyone who sees this kind of thing to report it as this resident did so that we can investigate and take action to stop such irresponsible behaviour."

Anyone who sees anyone fly tipping or dropping litter can report it anonymously to:

Since the launch of Sunderland City Council's Environmental Enforcement Policy last February, the Environmental Enforcement Team has carried out 4168 investigations into environmental crimes across the city, including littering, dog fouling and fly-tipping.

This has resulted in more than 500 formal warnings being issued and 174 fines issued for waste offences across the city.

The Echo is running an ongoing Clean Streets campaign, calling on all Wearsiders to be more responsible for their personal rubbish.

Anyone who sees items they think have been fly-tipped on a street or green space can contact Sunderland City Council to arrange its removal either by reporting it online at or by calling 0191 520 5550.