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40 black bags dumped illegally on moorland
10:10am Thursday 11th October 2012 in Devon
A case of fly tipping is being investigated by West Devon Borough Council after around 40 black bags were dumped illegally on moorland. The bags, containing garden waste, were discovered by a Dartmoor National Park Ranger at one of the old bomb bays on the site of a former air base on Roborough Down.
It is thought they were dumped between Tuesday afternoon, September 25 and Wednesday morning, September 26, 2012. The stretch of moorland, owned by the Maristow Estate, is an important wildlife habitat and also home to grazing sheep and ponies.
The black bags contained hedge clippings, long grass cuttings and other garden refuse.
Kate Phillips, from the Borough Council's Environmental Health office, said:' It's irresponsible to dump any kind of rubbish on the moor. Some people may not realise the consequences of fly tipping garden waste. Clippings from the garden can introduce non-native species to the moorland environment which can have a harmful impact on native plants and animal species.'
She added: 'This kind of fly tipping is also a hazard for the sheep and semi-wild ponies who roam the moorland. They could become seriously ill or even die if they eat certain types of garden waste.'
The Borough Council can serve a fixed penalty on the spot fine of £75 for fly tipping. However, court prosecutions can mean a fine of up to £20,000 or six months imprisonment.
Cllr Robert Oxborough, the Chairman of the Council's Community Services Committee, which monitors fly tipping, said:'There were a lot of black bags so it's possible someone living locally or someone out walking could have seen them being dumped. The perpetrator may have used a trailer or a van. I would appeal to anyone who knows anything to get in touch.'
You can contact the Council about fly tipping by calling 01822 813600.
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