MOTORISTS in Copeland are being warned that they face a fine if litter is thrown from their vehicle.
Copeland Council now has the power to fine the keeper of a vehicle if it has reason to believe that any of its occupiers has discarded litter.
Mike Starkie, Mayor of Copeland, said: “We welcome being given this new power in our ongoing battle with litter louts.
“Previously, it has been difficult to prove which occupier of a vehicle has been responsible for littering. This new government directive makes it easier for us to bring those responsible to account, and hopefully makes vehicle owners more responsible for their behaviour – and that of their passengers.”
In the last month alone, Copeland Council’s cleansing team has amassed a staggering 190 bags of litter collected from the borough’s roadsides.
A total of 57 bags of rubbish were collected on the road from Whelpside to Frizington Road, 26 bags were collected in the Cleator Moor area – from the junction of Birks Road to Bowthorn Road.
A further 57 bags were collected from verges in Whitehaven and Moresby, including the area of Whitehaven Golf Course and Scilly Banks to School Brow. The team also collected 36 bags from the B5295 (that runs past Copeland Pool and through Keekle) and 14 from the A595 between Westlakes Science Park and Moor Row.
Copeland Council launched the Copeland Pride of Place campaign in January this year to highlight everything that is positive in the borough and to shine a light on those individuals who disregard our communities through vandalism, fly-tipping, dog fouling and littering.
The council’s recently agreed budget earmarks £150,000 for environmental improvements as part of the campaign, including a new taskforce of two workers and a vehicle.
Mr Starkie recently wrote to McDonald’s in Whitehaven to suggest that car registration numbers are written on the food bags of customers who use its drive-through facility.
He added: “We need to begin to tackle this issue at the source and condemn the litter louts who see fit to just discard their rubbish in our beautiful countryside and expect someone else to clear up after them.
“We live in one of the most beautiful parts of country, two thirds of Copeland is in the Lake District which visitors flock to from all over the world.
“Despite the great work that is carried out by us here at Copeland Council and the numerous community groups and residents who take enormous pride in their area, it’s a disgrace that the minority have no respect for their surroundings and we take a zero tolerance approach to littering.”
For more information on the Copeland Pride of Place scheme go to www.copeland.gov.uk or follow the campaign at facebook/Copeland-Pride-of-Place or twitter.com/CBCPrideofPlace.