Watch as Sunderland van is first to be crushed in new fly-tipping crackdown
Fly-tippers are warned that their vehicles will be crushed as part of a new crackdown on illegal rubbish dumping.
Sunderland City Council has used national powers to authorise the destruction of a vehicle for the first time and says its action should be seen as a stark warning to other potential offenders.
The white transit van was seized by the authority’s environmental enforcement team after it was involved in a fly-tipping incident in Hemming Street, Grangetown, Sunderland, in August 2019.
The incident, which landed the registered keeper in court, was caught on CCTV and led to the vehicle being crushed at a scrapyard in Hendon on Monday.
The council’s action was filmed by the Sunderland Echo as part of our ongoing Clean Streets campaign to encourage residents to take greater pride in their community.
Councils have powers under the Control of Waste (Dealing with Seized Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015 to apply to confiscate any vehicle they suspect of being involved in environmental crime or fly-tipping.
Failing to provide lawful documentation relating the vehicle or any waste transported on it when asked can result in the council permanently seizing and crushing the vehicle as it did in this case.
Councillor Amy Wilson, the council’s cabinet member for environment and transport, said: “We hope that this will act as a stark warning to any drivers tempted to make a quick buck by using their vehicle for fly-tipping that we can and we will destroy it if we catch them in the act.
"Fly-tipped waste can be a real blight on neighbourhoods and as a council we are determined to do everything in our power to work with our communities to stamp it out.
"That is why when we have evidence to suspect a vehicle has been involved in fly-tipping, as we did in this case, we will seize it.
“And, if the owner doesn’t come forward within a certain period of time to claim it and provide the relevant documentation, we will look to use our legal powers to either crush it or sell it.”
Flyt-ipping incidents across Sunderland can be reported to the council online at https://www.sunderland.gov.uk/article/12259/Fly-tipping