Fears over winter spike in fly-tipping in South Tyneside as Lockdown 2 comes into force
Fears of a winter spike in fly-tipping have been raised if the latest coronavirus lockdown comes with renewed restrictions on recycling and waste.
Household waste and recycling centres across the country were shut earlier this year as part of a package of measures to try and slow the spread of COVID-19, with spikes seen in illegal dumping after the move.
And with strict rules on gatherings and travel due to be reimposed this week, concerns have been raised about potential knock-on effects.
“Have we got any indication whether [Middlefields Recycling Village] will be kept open this time under lockdown?,” asked South Tyneside Councillor Gladys Hobson.
“Last time that caused a lot of problems with fly-tipping in the area, so if we can keep it open that would be fantastic.
He added: “I presume we will be waiting on an indication from national Government on that one.”
Cllr Hobson was speaking at a meeting of the borough council’s Riverside Community Area Forum (CAF) on November 3.
Official Government guidance, which has not been updated since the October 31 lockdown announcement, says HWRCs should remain open ‘where possible’.
Cllr Angela Hamilton said she believed the current advice would remain in force for now, but also raised concerns about fly-tipping due to restrictions on the types of vehicles allowed to use Middlefields.
A spokesperson for South Tyneside Council said: “We are awaiting updated guidance from the Government on the next national lockdown so that we can assess which services might be affected and implement any changes from Thursday (November 5).
“Rest assured the council, South Tyneside Homes and our partners are here to support the people of South Tyneside throughout the coming weeks and beyond.
“At present, South Tyneside continues to be subject to the Alert Level HIGH (Tier 2).
“The Government has already indicated that essential shops and services will continue throughout the period of national lockdown and therefore we ask residents to do the right thing now, avoid congregating with others and don’t panic-buy.
“We will communicate local service changes via our website and social media channels.”