SPY PLEA TO DRIV­ERS TIPPING TO SEND IN SNOOP FOOTAGE

Coun­cil’s dash-cam bid to stop lit­ter louts

Sunday Mail (UK) - - News - Craig Mc­Don­ald

Driv­ers have been asked to use their in-car cam­era to shop lit­ter­bugs.

Pol iti­cians in one of the coun­try’s big­gest coun­cils say mo­tor ists should sub­mit dash- cam footage of peo­ple drop­ping rub­bish from the win­dows of their cars.

North Ayr­shire Coun­cil would then match up reg­is­tra­tion plates to track down of­fend­ers.

Coun­cil­lor Jim Montgomerie, who has re­spon­si­bil ity for en­vi­ron­men­tal ser­vices, said: “It is very frus­trat­ing when you see peo­ple brazenly throw­ing rub­bish out of their cars.

“It’s danger­ous to mo­torists and our staf f , who then have to clear up the mess. It’s also com­pletely dis­re­spect­ful to t he a rea and peo­ple who live there.

“We want our com­mu­ni­ties to be clean, tidy and wel­com­ing to vis­i­tors and lo­cals alike.

“That’s why we must de­ter the mi­nor­ity who think it’s OK to toss rub­bish on our streets.”

Dash­board cam­eras have been used by po­lice forces in Eng­land and Wales to help pros­e­cute mo­torists caught speed­ing or driv­ing danger­ously.

Po­lice in Scot­land regularly ap­peal to mo­torists to sup­ply dash- cam footage as part of ma­jor in­ves­ti­ga­tions.

The scheme in North Ayr­shire is be­lieved to be the first time a lo­cal au­thor­ity will use them to help tackle lit­ter. The coun­cil team will work with the Driver and Ve­hi­cle Li­cens­ing Agency to iden­tify the own­ers of ve­hi­cles.

In Scot­land, ve­hi­cle own­ers are not re­spon­si­ble for the ac­tions of oth­ers. But the coun­cil say they will be asked to pro­vide de­tails of any­one spot­ted throw­ing lit­ter.

If they don’t, they could be fined them­selves. A ded­i­cated email ad­dress has been set up at dash­cam@north-ayr­shire.gov.uk.

North Ayr­shire Coun­cil said en­force­ment would ex­tend to cig­a­rette ends flicked from cars.

A spokesman said: “We’ve given out pouches at coun­cil build­ings and other fa­cil­i­ties across North Ayr­shire to try to dis­cour­age peo­ple from flick­ing their cig­a­rette butts.”

The coun­cil’s en­vi­ron­men­tal

en­force­ment team were set up in 2015 and is­sued 14 f ixed penalty no­tices to peo­ple caught fly-tipping that year.

In the lat­est fig­ures, from 2017 to 2018, the num­ber rose to 238.

There has been a simi lar in­crease in peo­ple be­ing fined for fail­ing to clear up dog mess and lit­ter drop­ping.

Montgomerie, the Labour mem­ber for Salt­coats, added: “Our en­vi­ron­men­tal en­force­ment team have been a fan­tas­tic ad­di­tion to the coun­cil and have done ster­ling work. “The use of dash cams will give them an­other di­men­sion.”

An AA spokesman said: “Driv­ers who throw lit­ter from their ve­hi­cles should be aware that 20 per cent of cars are now fit­ted with dash cams.

“So there is a rea­son­able chance this be­hav­iour may be caught and fed back to po­lice or, in this case, the lo­cal au­thor­ity.

“The f lip side is that in Switzer­land and cer­tain coun­tries in Eastern Europe, this sort of mon­i­tor­ing be­hav­iour would be seen as sur­veil­lance and would be banned un­der ap­pli­ca­ble lo­cal laws.”

ON A MIS­SION North Ayr­shire Coun­cil want to stop mo­torists drop­ping lit­ter. Left, dash cam CRACK­DOWN Cllr Montgomerie pro­motes the new dash-cam scheme

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