Concerns about potential for travel ‘chaos’ near reopened rubbish tips

While the news that West Sussex County Council will be reopening its tips has been largely welcomed, concerns have been raised about the numbers who will head out to dump their rubbish.

There are concerns a rush of people wanting to use the newly reopened rubbish tips could overwhelm the surrounding road network

Dr James Walsh, leader of Arun District Council, said he was pleased the 11 tips would be reopening on Monday (May 11) but was worried about ‘chaos’ on the surrounding roads.

Dr Walsh said: “Given the pent-up level of demand especially with garden  and DIY waste, I foresee chaos on the surrounding roads and approach roads, with probable abuse of other users, and worse still of staff.”

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The tips closed temporarily in March to ensure the safety of residents and staff, and to limit the spread of the Covid-19 virus.

Since then, there have been reports of an increase in fly-tipping, which the district and borough councils are responsible for clearing.

In a letter to Deborah Urquhart, cabinet member for environment, Dr Walsh repeated his earlier suggestions that some sort of control could be put in place at the tips, such as admitting people by postcode, or by odd and even house and car numbers.

He added: “I can’t help feeling that the reopening is being set up to fail, and to force closure again. I hope that I will be proved wrong.”

A county council spokesman said: “We cannot determine how many people will consider a trip to the [tips] essential in the first few days after reopening or how long they are prepared to queue, if indeed long queues form.

“We have encouraged full use the fully-functioning kerbside services, advised of other ways to dispose of waste and suggested holding off if that’s possible in accordance with the ‘essential trips only’ policy.”

The advice issued so far includes:

• Only bringing waste or recycling which is not suitable to be picked up in your kerbside collection;

• Checking when your local site is open at before leaving home;

• Considering whether you need to come straight away Sites may be busy in the first few days and at weekends;

• Only cars will be allowed into the sites – no vans or trailers;

• Social distancing barriers will be in place and only one person will be allowed to leave the car;

• Site staff will not be able to help you load or unload;

• Abuse or aggression to site staff will not be tolerated and could result in sites being closed again.

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