If litter is dropped from a vehicle, the owner can now be issued with a £75 fine – no matter who was responsible for throwing it.
Starting this month, this new Wealden Council rule is hoped to make it easier to clamp down on litterbugs and keep verges clean.
Councillor Ann Newton, Cabinet member with responsibility for landscape protection, said, “For too long drivers and passengers travelling through the District have thrown litter out of vehicles, thinking they can speed out of reach. Not anymore.
“We will be making full use of new powers strengthening the Environmental Protection Act to bring the culprits to justice and make them pay for the environmental damage they do.
“The new regulations allow local councils to fine the registered keeper of the vehicle if litter is thrown from it.”
Up until now, Wealden District Council has had to prove the identity of the person depositing and leaving the litter which is almost impossible to witness in a moving vehicle.
Councillor Newton said, “A substantial amount of Council Tax is spent each year to try to keep Wealden’s verges clean, but as quick as it is cleared, it reappears.
“Much of the District has benefited from litter picking efforts of our local communities who took part in the Great Wealden Spring Clean last month. We want to keep our District looking good.”
The new powers, which were previously only available to councils in London, have been welcomed as a positive deterrent to the issue of litter on the roadsides of Wealden – including around Hailsham, Polegate, Uckfield, and Crowborough.
The Council is asking everyone to help. If you see litter being tossed from a vehicle, get in touch with details of where and when the offence occurred, what was deposited and the registration and details of the vehicle involved.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org call 01892 602735 or report at www.wealden.gov.uk.