Fylde coast fire risk tyres cleared after direct action

Some of the 1,000 tyres found at a site in Poulton
Some of the 1,000 tyres found at a site in Poulton
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Around 1,000 tyres called a “serious fire risk” have finally been cleared from a Fylde coast site following action by environmental officers.

Environment Agency Enforcement Officers were alerted to the issue on land at Castleworks in Station Road, Poulton, in February.

We negotiated for the site to be cleared by the tenant (in June), which cost him around £800. In addition to the cost of the tyres, this proved an expensive mistake for the tenant

Officers visited the site and found huge piles of worn out tyres being stored outside, and in buildings, causing a serious fire risk.

Investigations found a former tenant of the site had bought the tyres and stored them there, intending to become a broker and sell them on. He had asked the landlord if he could store “a few tyres temporarily” but the owner of the site had no idea of the scale of the problem.

Lead investigating officer, Geoff Allen, said: “Across the country, we are cracking down on waste crime. In this case, the best course of action was to work together to resolve the problem as quickly as possible.

“We negotiated for the site to be cleared by the tenant (in June), which cost him around £800. In addition to the cost of the tyres, this proved an expensive mistake for the tenant.”

Waste tyres can pose serious problems if not reused, recycled or disposed of correctly.

Some people knowingly take payment for waste tyres then dump them to avoid the costs of proper treatment, looking to make a quick profit.

This can cause harm to the environment and affect local communities through fly tipping and fires. Burning tyres can cause pollution, releasing toxic smoke and chemicals that can lead to serious environmental damage

Mr Allen interviewed all parties involved and decided in this case, neither the landowner nor the former tenant realised it was illegal for the tyres to be there, or it was an offence that could lead to prosecution.

He decided they were not deliberately committing a waste crime and prosecution would not be in the public interest.

He added: “Although he (the tenant) footed the bill, it’s important to note that the ultimate responsibility for crimes like this lies with the land owner, who would have been liable for the clear up, and may have been prosecuted.

“Thankfully that wasn’t necessary in this case and the tyres have gone to an authorised recycling plant to be disposed of correctly. The site is now clear and we’re delighted with the results.”

Anyone who suspects waste crime should call the Environment Agency’s hotline on 0800 807060.