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Wirral may fine its own refuse workers for dropping litter - COMMENT UPDATE

Refuse collection workers in the Wirral, North West England, who drop litter while doing their job could be served with fixed penalty notices.

Wirral Council made the decision last week in response to complaints from residents and in anticipation of paper and packaging collections that were introduced on Monday.

Under the scheme paper and packaging is placed in grey bins loose and the council is concerned the material could more easily fall out during collections. Wirral has already contacted Biffa, which has a collection contract with the council asking it to be extra careful.

The council added that littering costs it £4m a year to clean up and if officers witness people dropping litter, they will fine them to deter others.

A council spokesperson said: It is an offence for anyone to drop litter and then leave it, this includes council employees. Wirral Council is striving to protect our environment and so take this issue very seriously.

All bin wagons are provided with equipment to pick up any escaping rubbish, and crews have been reminded it is their responsibility to dispose of it correctly.

However, not everyone thinks the move is such a great idea. Conservative Cllr Ian Lewis wrote on his blog: On the face of it, it shows that the council is getting serious about the problem but Im not sure that the threat of a fine is the best way to make you take pride in your job.

Comment
19/4/07: Sadly there is often a trail of litter on the road after we have had our bins emptied! Wirrall obviously aren't the only ones with the problem but seem to be the only ones acting on it.
Posted by anonymous
 
20/4/07: This is silly to the extreme. Any responsible employer would include it in their operatives' job descriptions and work instructions. This is an example of where this country is going wrong. Local authorities are taking their remit to extremes - they were never created to be 'Black Shirt' enforcers.
Posted by Bryan Hare

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