Longford County Council is warning members of the public to be alert for bogus waste collectors who are advertising cheap refuse disposal on social media.
“We want to alert people to the fact that these people are advertising on Facebook a cheap waste collection service and that this is illegal without a waste collection permit. The waste collected will more than likely be dumped on a road or in a bog somewhere,” said Gary Brady, who is Environmental Awareness Officer with Longford County Council.
Longford County Council has been clamping down on illegal dumping in a big way with a large number of successful prosecutions being brought before the courts in recent months.
“The big issue is people are taking to Facebook to advertise their services. But if you hand your waste to someone and they dump it and the council traces it back to you, it’s you who will be prosecuted,” said Mr Brady.
“Then you’ll be paying double - you’ll be paying someone to take it away and you’ll be paying the council when you’re fined.
“You should never ever give your waste to the man with the van. If you need to dispose of your waste, whether it’s bags or large bulky items like beds, carpet or furniture, you should contact the Council and they will give you a list of people who can take it away and dispose of it properly for you.
“People don’t realise that going to their local recycling centre to dispose of their household waste and recycling will only cost them a few euro. People say they can’t afford to dispose of their waste, but in reality the weekly charges are generally cheaper than a take away, a packet of cigarettes or a night out, and it’s a lot cheaper than paying €150 litter fine or more if you end up in court.
“A lot of the waste in your home is either free to recycle or can go into your blue bin. All electrical items, glass, cans and batteries are free to recycle and we find these items dumped regularly with other wastes.”
Longford County Council is also appealing to people who are going on ‘staycations’ or on day trips to scenic areas in the county to be mindful of their environment and to clean up after themselves when having bonfires and barbeques.
“You should always leave a location the way you found it,” concluded Mr Brady.