Could Your Business Be Risking a £5K Fine?

In 2014, the law in England and Wales changed with regard to the transporting of waste. If your business regularly transports waste, whether it’s your own or other businesses, it requires you to register as a waste carrier with the Environment Agency. This applies even if the waste you transport is in small quantities. Failure to do so could land you with a hefty fine of up to £5,000.

If you want to know how to become a registered waste carrier keep reading.

Why It’s Important to Register

The Environment Protection (Duty of Care) Regulations 2014 were introduced to better control the disposal of various types of waste. If your business premises produce waste, you have a legal responsibility to ensure you store the waste safely on site, collected by a registered waste carrier, and disposed of at a licensed facility.

Waste can have a damaging effect on human health and the environment if it’s not disposed of or properly managed, and the regulations are there to discourage fly-tipping and help protect the environment.

The regulations apply to all businesses who transport waste. You could be running a gardening business and carrying green waste such as hedge and grass cuttings, or perhaps you’re a kitchen fitter who transports old kitchen units or wall tiles, or even a scrap metal dealer. If you carry any kind of waste as part of business activity you need a waste carrier licence to transport it.

If you don’t register, you could be liable to a £5,000 fine. Something else to consider is that if you’re involved in an accident while carrying waste products and you don’t have a licence, your insurance could be invalidated.

Homeowners moving their own waste or a business moving waste within its own premises are not required to register as waste carriers.

What is a Waste Carrier Licence?

It’s a licence that applies to businesses and people who transport, dispose of, sell or buy waste, or arrange for others to do it for them. Basically, the waste carrier licence covers any waste that is transported in a commercial vehicle.

The application process is straightforward, and once you’ve registered for a licence, the information is made public, so any potential customers can check you have the correct license. The details of your business will be made available in the Environmental Agency’s public register of waste carriers, dealers, and brokers.

How to Become a Registered Waste Carrier

It’s easy to register for a licence. You can apply for one online. There are two tiers, an upper and lower tier. You apply for a lower-tier licence if:

  • You only carry waste you produce in the course of carrying out your business. There is an exception which is construction or demolition waste
  • You only carry, arrange, or deal in waste from quarried and mines, waste from agricultural premises, or animal by-products
  • Your business is a charity or voluntary organisation

The lower tier also includes waste collection, disposal or regulation authority.

If none of the above applies to your business it’s likely that the upper-tier will apply. Some examples include:

  • Buying or selling waste or using an agent to do such, for example, a dealer
  • Construction and demolition waste
  • A skip company or some other business that transports other people’s waste
  • A business that arranges for the waste from other businesses to be recovered, disposed of, or transported, such as a broker.

Employing A Locally Registered Waste Carrier

It may be that you only infrequently have waste to dispose of, or do not wish to transport waste products yourself. If this is the case, then it’s important to make sure you’re employing only licensed waste carriers to do the job for you. Your waste is always your responsibility and you are responsible for ensuring it is disposed of correctly. If you employ a waste disposal company without a license, you could be fined or even prosecuted.

To avoid handing your waste over to a rogue tradesperson, who could fly-tip your waste and leave you with a hefty fine, there are a few things to consider:

  • Always ask to see a Waste Carriers License.
  • Always ask for a receipt for the work.
  • Ensure that any tradesperson you employ is using a registered waste carrier.
  • Ensure you work with a reputable company.

Here at KSD Environmental, we go to great lengths to minimise our ecological footprint and therefore always ensure that we dispose of all waste in the most environmentally friendly way available. We strive to recycle 99% of all of the waste we collect. With so many different solutions available, simply dumping skip loads of waste into a landfill site is not a satisfactory solution.

We pride ourselves on providing efficient and reliable waste removal and skip hire services.
To find out more about us, or for a free quotation, get in touch with a member of our team today. Give us a call on 01273 608711.