Why should you be careful about dumping tyres?

Posted by: Cal on 30/09/2014

Category: General

The New South Wales Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) is leading the fight against illegal dumping and the waste created by tyres and smartphones.

In fact, EPA's director of waste and resource recovery, Steve Beaman, spoke to Government News about new changes being unveiled that will require those buying new car tyres to think more carefully about how they will dispose of their old ones.

In fact, he said that as early as next year, local governments would be able to rely on smartphone and tablet apps to catch anyone who is illegally disposing of tyres, or asbestos.

These items are becoming hugely problematic and costly for the councils involved.

How does the app work?

All tyres have a barcode attached that reveals information about the tyre's size and weight, as well as who it was given to and when it will be dumped. 

These details are passed to the EPA and given to the relevant councils. Once the tyres have been delivered to landfill, their barcode is scanned again. If the tyres don't quite make it that far, the system is then alerted.

"This online tracking system is going to make it harder for rogue operators and easier for tyre retailers to prove their compliance," Mr Beaman said.

"It works like a parcel tracking system in reverse: we're tracking it back through the supply chain to landfill. Any tyres that don't make it: we know."

The EPA already run inspections on tyre retailers to ensure all aspects of the industry are working as they should. New legislation has made it mandatory for tyre retailers to put these barcodes onto old tyres, so when you replace your older set with a brand new one, you can be sure they are being sent to the appropriate place and not being illegally dumped.

Each waste storage facility in the country is licenced to contain no more than 5 tonnes of waste tyres, which is the equivalent of 500 tyres. In order to ensure you do not contribute further to this, you may want to consider your tyre maintenance. If your tyres are in the best possible shape they will not need to be replaced so often due to wear and tear.

People who spot illegal dumping can email photos of this from their smartphones. Built-in geospatial technology in the app will allow the council to pinpoint the location of the rubbish so it can be picked up. Areas where this occurs frequently can then be targeted using barriers, signs and CCTV. 

What is wrong with dumping tyres?

Stockpiling tyres can provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes and increase the chances of mosquito-borne diseases. Not only that, but this can also increase the risk of fires. Rubber tyres generally burn much more quickly, creating a hotter fire and significantly more smoke fume than other waste. This can make it harder to extinguish.

Tyre fires can also pose a risk to human health, as they emit toxic fumes. As a result, essential infrastructure and facilities in a large radius can be affected.

Why choose a reputable tyre retailer?

Whether you are looking for a set of new tyres or want to have your current set of tyres maintained, it is essential to take them to a reputable retailer - this will guarantee a better set of tyres and also ensure that your old set is being disposed of carefully and legally.

However, you can also keep your old tyres for use around the home. Click here to find out how you can use them as toys for your pets, and here to see how you can incorporate a set into your exercise routine