Bristol-based RDF export company Boomeco has apologised for allowing infestation at a dockside site, saying it was new to the business and has now put new procedures in place.
In May 2014, the Environment Agency (EA) received complaints about a serious fly problem on Avonmouth dockside and was also alerted by Boomeco about it.
The company was authorised to store 10,000 tonnes of waste but EA officers found a number of the RDF bales were in poor condition: some contained flies and maggots while others leaked a noxious smelling liquid.
In response, Boomeco repaired the damaged bales, sprayed them with an insecticide, and reduced the height at which they were stacked.
Boomeco pleaded guilty before Bristol magistrates and was fined £14,000 and ordered to pay £4,873 costs.
The company told the court that the bales had been damaged during handling by a forklift truck that was unsuited for such work.
Boomeco managing director Oliver Latter told MRW: “At the time, we were a new entrant to the market. We should have taken greater care with this waste. Steps were taken once we realised the problem, including removing damaged bales from the site.
“We are a responsible business. We have accepted responsibility, apologised to the court and pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity.
“Stronger procedures are now in place to make sure this situation never occurs again. For example, our bale storage now does not take place at the docks and new handling equipment has been invested in to reduce the chances of damaged bales.”