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Fly Tipping

A flowchart of what happens when fly tipping is reported to the Council


What it is

Fly tipping is the illegal dumping of items. It includes almost all waste items ranging from a single black rubbish bag to multiple loads of construction waste.

If you discover fly tipped waste after the event, please report it.

 Report off-road fly tipping

Alternatively, you can call our hotline number 01727 809019 

If the fly tip is obstructing the highway this should be reported to Hertfordshire Country Council using the online reporting form here

Report on-road fly tipping

Alternatively, you can call Hertfordshire County Council 0300 123 4047

If it looks like the fly tipping might cause an immediate pollution risk to a watercourse (for example, a river)

Report to Environment Agency

Alternatively, you can call the Environment Agency on 03708 506 506.

If you witness flytipping and you would like to report it to the Police 

Report witnessing a fly-tip to the police 

Alternatively, you can call the Environment Agency on 101.


What is the punishment for fly-tipping?

What is the punishment for fly-tipping? Toggle accordion

Fly-tipping is a serious criminal offence. A person convicted of fly-tipping could face a fine of up to £50,000 and/or 12 months imprisonment. In more serious cases a Crown Court may impose an unlimited fine and the prison term increases to 5 years. It is also important to realise that there can be offences committed before the fly-tip occurs when the sanctions can be the same as actually doing the fly-tipping. Persons linked to these cases may be liable to investigation and prosecution if the waste is subsequently fly-tipped.

They include:

  • Anyone transferring waste to another person for disposal without checking:
    • whether that person is authorised to carry waste and
    • where the waste is going,
  • Anyone giving permission for fly-tipping to occur on land they control
  • Fly-tipping associated with dumping waste from vehicles.  In these cases the person controlling the use of the vehicle, normally the registered keeper, can also be prosecuted. This means that it is possible for a prosecution to occur when only the vehicle, not the driver, is identifiable.   
What information should I provide when reporting a fly tip?

What information should I provide when reporting a fly tip? Toggle accordion

Information that you provide can greatly support us in our fight against this illegal activity. To assist our investigations, it would be helpful to record as much information as you can at the time of discovery. If you can take photos (e.g. camera phones) please do so. If you find evidence of where the waste has come from, take a photo but please leave in situ, don't remove it. Factors to consider include:

  • Date and time that you saw the fly-tippers in action or discovered the rubbish. 
  • Location of the incident - address or local landmarks. 
  • A description of the rubbish e.g. builder’s rubble. 
  • If there was a vehicle involved, what was the registration number; make; model; colour? 
  • Were there any distinguishing features or signs on the vehicle? 
  • Where you were when you saw the fly-tipping; what kind of view did you have; how far away were you; what were the weather and light conditions? 
  • How many people did you see? 
  • Did you recognise any of them? 
  • Can you describe them? (e.g. sex, hair colour, height, distinguishing features) 
  • What did you actually see these people do?

All information is valuable to us and will be treated confidentially.

How do I prevent fly-tipping?

How do I prevent fly-tipping? Toggle accordion

Householders and businesses have a ‘Duty of Care’ to ensure that their waste is transferred only to authorised persons. By following these simple steps you may help prevent your waste being fly-tipped.

  • If you give waste to anyone else ensure they are authorised to carry it. Ask for their carrier’s authorisation. You can check online or by telephone 03708 506 506.
  • Ask where the waste is going. Use the waste directory online to check legitimate sites.
  • Ask for a receipt detailing where the waste is going, vehicle details, carrier’s authorisation number - this is a legal obligation for businesses but is good practice if you are a private householder. Further information is available
  • Can the waste be taken by the Council special refuse collection for large items? For details contact us on 01727 809019 or visit our bulky waste page