West Lothian installs ‘mobile’ CCTV cameras to catch fly-tippers

West Lothian council is to install ‘mobile’ CCTV cameras in fly-tipping hotspots which will be used to gather evidence to support prosecutions of anyone who dumps material on public land.

Executive councillor for environment Tom Conn (right) joined operatives from the council’s cleaner communities team

The cameras will be rolled out across the region, where images will be recorded and then “checked on a regular basis”.

Sites will be prioritised based on the historical prevalence of fly tipping in that location with one of the first set to be the Birdsmill area which sits just off the A89 at the railway viaduct on the border between West Lothian and Edinburgh.

The authority said it believes that the vast majority of fly tipping is commercial in nature, rather than caused by households.

It explained that often the type and volume of items left, such as large amounts of tyres, builders rubble and discarded bathrooms, would clearly appear to have been generated by business activities, although this is often impossible to prove conclusively.


Statistics last week published by the council showed that fly-tipping cost West Lothian more than £32,000 in the last three months of 2023 from 143 incidents. . This was up from £30,613  in the same period the year before.

The council said it has been hit with a spate of issues recently, with cemeteries in particular being targeted.

Executive councillor for environment Tom Conn joined operatives from the council’s cleaner communities team on a visit to the area to see the issue at first hand.

Councillor Conn said: “It is clear to see that sadly there are those with no regard for our local environment who think that the dumping of waste is acceptable. Fly tipping and littering are both equally unacceptable and cannot be tolerated under any circumstance.

“These new cameras will be deployed in known areas of concern and will act both as a deterrent to those who are contemplating fly tipping and will help the evidence gathering process to help prosecute those who break the law.”


Cllr Conn added that he was “disappointed” at a recent incident with waste dumped at Birdsmill which was a mixture of commercial builders’ rubble, and tyres which the council doesn’t collect at its recycling centres.

The risk of fly-tipping when limiting items at HWRCs is often debated, however, Cllr Conn added: “Businesses will be well aware of the options available to them to dispose of these items appropriately and their legal responsibility to do so. It was also disappointing to see a large amount of discarded soft drink cans and bottles which can be recycled in households’ green bins.

“We need to stop making excuses for those who desecrate our countryside and point the finger at those who make a fast buck which council taxpayers then have to pay to clear up their mess.”

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