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Tyre recyclers fear they are next in fire regulations battle

The tyre recycling industry has expressed concern at the waste wood sector’s dispute over fire safety regulations and fears its members will face similar problems.

As MRW has reported, Hadfield Wood Recyclers is currently not accepting materials at its Manchester and Middlesbrough sites to avoid enforcement action from the EA relating to its new fire prevention plan (FPP) guidance.

The Wood Recyclers Association (WRA) said it could not understand why the EA did not wait until the completion of tests, into how fires start and develop in waste wood stacks, before issuing the new FPP document.

Unlike the wood sector, no tyre recyclers have had to stop taking in materials as a result of the FPP regulation. The Tyre Recovery Association (TRA) said it was consulted by the EA but failed to persuade the agency and fears members may soon face similar problems.

TRA secretary general Peter Taylor said: “The wood recyclers have been on the front line of this but I guess our turn is next”.

He said the regulations were forcing reputable operators out of busines because they could not immediately meet an imposed new standard.

“By reducing responsible operators’ capacity, those arisings will then go elsewhere, probably to less responsible businesses working under exemptions,” Taylor said.

“There isn’t a huge amount of money to be made from reprocessing end-of-life materials so it is cheaper to go out of business than it is to meet these fanciful regulations.”

Taylor added that one of the biggest issues tyre recyclers faced was arson, which required tougher enforcement rather than new legislation.

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