A WARNING has gone out after an increase in fly-tipping.

According to the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), a total of 90,055 fly-tipping incidents were recorded across the region in 2020/21, with, incidents on agricultural land increasing, year-on-year, from 420 to 489.

In York last year and the year before there were 1,808 incidents of fly-tipping compared with 1,540 over the previous two years.

For the same period in Ryedale there were 114 reported incidents compared with 101 in 2018/19 and in Selby those figures were 725 in 2020/ 21 and 625 in 2018/9. 

Meanwhile in the East Riding of Yorkshire they had 1,287 cases in 2020/21 a drop from 1,442 previously.

Rupert Wailes-Fairbairn, of rural insurance broker Lycetts said: “Fly-tipping is an unwelcome blight on our countryside and can represent far more than an inconvenience to victims of the crime,” said .

“Incidents not only pose significant environmental and human health risks, but also a legal and financial burden for farmers and landowners.

“Although local authorities will usually pay the clean-up costs of clearing waste from public land, the responsibility for removing waste from private land falls squarely at the feet of the landowners. If they fail to do so, they can face prosecution.”

Clean-up bills per incident average around £1,000, according to the National Rural Crime Network, but large-scale incidents can cost upwards of £10,000.

Mr Wailes-Fairbairn said:“In some cases, farmers can be repeatedly targeted and costs can quickly escalate.

“Many combined farm policies, however, will cover the clean-up costs, typically capped between £10,000 and £15,000 for the insurance period.”

Mr Wailes-Fairbairn said environmental criminals can be more inclined to act under cover of darkness and that councils will often see a surge of incidents in January as people look to dispose of post festive waste, including Christmas trees.

He said: “For those at risk of being targeted during these dark winter evenings, extra vigilance and a review of security measures is prudent.

“Prevention is better than cure and steps should be taken to ensure access to land and fields is restricted, where possible, with physical barriers.

“Gates should be locked when not in use and although witnesses of fly-tipping incidents should not approach the perpetrators, by cutting back hedges and installing exterior lighting, visibility for the landowner can be notably improved. The installation of security cameras can also act as a deterrent and help in securing successful prosecutions.”