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'Drum-tipping' provides new problem

‘Drum-tipping’ is the latest, potentially more damaging incarnation of ‘fly-tipping’ that is causing a Gloucestershire council great concern.

In the space of a week, two incidents have occurred in Tewkesbury where drums containing a currently unknown chemical have been dumped.

The first incident involved three drums being knocked over after they were left in Sandhurst Lane, near Gloucester. Liquid from two of these spilt on to the ground and road, with the Environment Agency (EA) paying a specialist contractor thousands of pounds to clear the spillage.

EA officer Robert Green said: “The spilt drums were likely to have caused serious pollution and therefore they had to be removed as an emergency. This has been done at considerable cost.”

In the second incident, four more drums were dumped in a public right of way, with the contents thought to be the same as in the first incident.

Tewkesbury Borough Council head of commercial services Chris Pike said: “The Council had to arrange for the removal of the drums as they were dumped on public land. They pose a significant risk to the environment and to anyone who tampers with them and, therefore, we had to foot the bill to remove them urgently. The cost will be met by the council tax payer.

“We suspect that someone is servicing plant equipment in the area and instead of paying for the waste to be disposed of properly, is dumping the material in quiet areas. This is an act of vandalism and anti-social behaviour. It’s a crime against the environment.”

The EA and Tewkesbury Borough Council have urged companies who have recently had machinery serviced where waste liquid was produced to contact them urgently to prevent further incidents.

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