Litter, Opinion, Product Stewardship, Tyre waste, Victoria

Vic EPA sends out warning to tyre retailers

EPA Victoria is warning tyre retailers and mechanics after investigators discovered an illegal stockpile of thousands of waste tyres on a property south of Bendigo.

The tyres are believed to have come from businesses across the Bendigo, Geelong, and metropolitan Melbourne.

EPA Victoria officers acting on a tipoff from the public, used aerial drones to locate a series of piles containing approximately 10,000 waste tyres. They measured one of the piles at 40 metres wide, 30 metres long and up to four metres high.

The premises did not have a license or permit to receive, store, dispose of, or process waste tyres, breaching numerous EPA regulations.

EPA Victoria Chief Investigator Greg Elms says officers from EPA, Victoria Police and the City of Greater Bendigo inspected the property on Thursday 14 March.

“Uncontrolled stockpiling of waste tyres creates a fire hazard and the risk of pollution of the land and nearby waterways,” Elms said.

“Retailers and mechanics disposing of waste tyres must make sure they are sending them to legitimate operators, who track their transport through EPA’s online Waste Tracker app and take them to properly licensed premises for recycling or disposal,” he said.

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“Registering the transport of waste through Waste Tracker shows you are doing the right thing, and being careful to choose a legitimate operator can make sure your waste tyres don’t wind up dumped in a paddock or creek.”

The property owner has been issued with a court order requiring the removal of the waste tyres for proper disposal. We continue to investigate the sources of the dumped tyres.

“The focus is now on the tyre retailers identified as incorrectly disposing of waste tyres or not using the EPA Waste Tracker app,” Elms said.

“Waste tyres are reportable priority waste under Victorian law. Tyre retailers, transporters and receivers have an obligation to ensure they’re sent for proper disposal and to use the Waste Tracker app when they’re moved from any premises,” he said.

“Suspiciously cheap deals from waste transporters could land you in serious trouble if your tyres are later found dumped on public or private land. Businesses caught flouting the rules face hefty fines and even prosecution.”

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