In a bid to prevent fires this summer, Leicestershire County Council is calling for residents to dispose of batteries, disposable BBQs and ashes responsibly.
In the last year, operations were temporarily disrupted at both Whetstone and Coalville recycling and household waste sites, when discarded batteries caught fire. These were just two of several fires caused by discarded batteries which have taken place in Leicestershire over the last few years.
The council is supporting the ‘Don’t cause a bincident’ campaign – led by the Environmental Services Association - to encourage householders to safely take flammable items, which are wrongly disposed of, to their local recycling and household waste site.
While fires present a risk for the authority and its recycling facilities all year round, it is during the hot, dry, summer months that the risk of significant fires increases, caused by carelessly discarded items, as they can spread more quickly through drier waste material, with the potential to cause a major incident.
Batteries, disposable BBQs and their ashes are everyday items we take for granted, but they are particularly prone to causing fires if they are not recycled properly.
“Thankfully the fires at our recycling and household waste sites have been resolved with minimal disruption, but they serve as a reminder to us all to make sure we’re recycling right and disposing of our waste correctly. Person:Councillor Blake Pain, cabinet member for the environment and the green agenda
Every year, fire and rescue services attend at least 300 significant fires at recycling and waste management facilities across England. However, the total number of smaller un-reported fire incidents occurring across the sector is estimated to be significantly higher as hundreds of fires are extinguished by operators before the need to call the emergency services.
These fires can not only put lives at risk but can disrupt waste services and damage the environment.
- Never put batteries in your general waste or recycling bins
- Only recycle batteries using a proper battery recycling service, such as at your local recycling and household waste site, or battery collection point often found in supermarkets
- Remove batteries from broken devices if you can and recycle both the battery and the device separately.
- If you’re unable to remove the battery, recycle it together with your old electricals
- Be responsible when using a BBQ or fire pit by ensuring your coals and ashes are extinguished and fully cold before disposing of them at a recycling and household waste site
Residents can find out more about recycling batteries, and disposing of ashes, BBQs and coals responsibly in the county, and more about the dangers by visiting www.lesswaste.org.uk.