Vehicle stop-checks result in fines for unlicensed waste carriers

Hillingdon Council teamed up with the Metropolitan Police, the Environment Agency and the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) for a vehicle stop-check operation in West Drayton, Yiewsley and Cowley last month, aimed at clamping down on fly-tipping, unlicensed waste carriers, overloaded vehicles and criminals who use the road network.

The operation, which resulted in hefty fines for some drivers, was initiated by the council's Tenancy Management Anti-Social Behaviour team, and led jointly with Environmental Enforcement Team and Police Partnership Tasking team. It saw 27 drivers stopped and 14 fined £300 each for failing to prove within seven days that they held the necessary waste transfer records or licences. Failure to pay the fine could result in prosecution - writes

Three vehicles were seized because they were not roadworthy, one was seized for not being taxed or insured, and one driver was fined £100 for failing to prevent his vehicle's load from falling onto the highway.

Numerous other vehicles were found to be overloaded and were either seized or allowed to leave once the weight had been reduced.

The police also fined a number of drivers for traffic offences.

Councillor Douglas Mills, Cabinet Member for Community, Commerce and Regeneration, said: "Fly-tipping is one of the most complained about issues in the borough and I'm supportive of regular and rigorous checks on anyone who uses our road network to transport waste. I'm also pleased to see tough action being taken against those who don't have the necessary documentation to prove their activities are above board. This is a great example of how the agencies work together to combat crime and anti-social behaviour in Hillingdon and I commend everyone involved for their efforts."

Julia Leigh, Senior Environmental Crime Officer for the Environment Agency, said: "People who manage waste illegally cost the taxpayer millions every year in clean-up costs. They also undercut legitimate business, and pose a direct threat to sustainable growth in the waste management sector. Our enforcement days make sure that the right waste goes to the right place ‎to stop unpermitted businesses undermining legitimate businesses and help create a level playing field."

DVSA Area Enforcement Manager, Mick Cheeseman, said: "The DVSA's priority is to protect you from unsafe drivers and vehicles. There's no excuse for driving without a licence, with mechanical defects or with an overweight or unstable load. Any driver breaking these rules is putting other road users at risk and could face losing their licence and livelihood."

The Environment Agency is responsible for issuing waste carrier licences. To check the register visit: Environment Agency public register

The operation took place on 17 October.

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