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Beware rogue waste clearance operators

by Alison Cornmell

If you’re having a clear out, make sure anyone offering to take away your waste is authorised to do so.

Householders using private contractors to remove household, garden or construction waste must make sure the company or individual is a registered waste carrier. You are advised to:

  • Ask to see their waste carriers licence
  • Ring the Environment Agency on 03708 506506 to check their credentials or visit their website: https://www.gov.uk/find-registered-waste-carrier
  • Ask where they’re proposing to take your waste and if they have a waste transfer note.
  • Don’t pay cash. Ask for an invoice and pay by a secure payment method or cheque, so payments can be traced if the waste is fly tipped.
  • If it sounds too good to be true it probably is. If you’re hiring a skip, the average cost should be around £200.
  • Never agree to cold callers offering any type of home improvements work, roofing, gardening services, tree surgery or household waste removal.

Not checking if you’re hiring a registered operator could be more expensive in the long run, as householders can face an unlimited fine for failing to hire an authorised waste carrier.

Cllr Shelley Powell, Knowsley Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Neighbourhoods explained: “We urge residents to beware of rogue waste clearance operators and ensure they don’t fall victim to the illegal disposal of waste. Fly tipping is a blight on our communities and, as a local authority, we can and will fine householders if they haven’t taken reasonable steps to ensure their waste is passed on to an authorised waste carrier. This will include any household that hires a company to take materials away from their house and the materials end up fly tipped.”

A waste carrier registration is normally needed for the following categories:

  • All building and associated trades;
  • Landscape gardeners, tree fellers and surgeons;
  • House clearers;
  • Retail establishments and;
  • Scrap metal dealers.

Alternatively, residents can dispose of their waste at Knowsley’s two Household Recycling and Waste Centres run by the Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority at Wilson Road, Huyton and Depot Road, Kirkby.