With the festive season well and truly under way, Newtownabbey Borough Council’s Environmental Health team are appealing to residents of the borough to be responsible and dispose of their waste correctly, particularly outside bars and takeaways.
During the party season, littering tends to increase as people throw fast food packaging and cigarette butts on the ground after their night out.
This adds to the problem that more people litter in the darker months as they think they won’t be caught.
However, the council will be sending a strong message as staff will be out in force, day and night, to catch would-be offenders.
This comes as part of the council’s ongoing ‘Mess up, Clean up or Pay up’ campaign targeting litter throughout the borough in a bid to try and reduce the problem.
Ryan Johnston senior enforcement officer explains: “The Christmas party season is a time when litter offences in our borough dramatically increase, with many of our streets and car parks strewn with litter each night.
“Littering is an antisocial and criminal act and we will use our enforcement powers to make those responsible pay a penalty.
“It’s also a great burden on the ratepayer as the council has to devote considerable man power and financial resources every year cleaning up and removing it from the borough’s roadways, parks and residential areas.”
Newtownabbey Borough Council will issue a fixed penalty notice for £80, without warning, for all littering offences identified. So far this year council officers have issued 128 fixed penalty notices for littering offences and taken legal proceedings in 28 cases.
Also footage from the council’s CCTV cameras is being used to identify those who throw litter from their vehicles.
The public are also encouraged to be more vigilant and more vocal.
To report an incident of someone dropping litter from a vehicle contact environmental services on 9034 0160 or online at www.newtownabbey.gov.uk providing as much information regarding the locations and times the offences are being committed as possible.