Council takes to two wheels to tackle environmental crimes
Posted on: 12 July 2018
Council officers are now using pedal power to tackle dog fouling and littering in the district.
North Devon Council’s Neighbourhood Officers are now equipped with mountain bikes, allowing them to cover greater areas more quickly and to track down offenders in places that aren’t accessible by car, such as the Tarka Trail.
This is the latest in a series of new initiatives to tackle environmental issues. Recently the council’s Environmental Protection team started using biodegradable spray paint to highlight dog mess in problem areas. New templates with the message “clean it up” are also being used to make sure the message is really clear – dog mess will not be tolerated. Spraying is already proving a successful deterrent, with recent efforts in Rock Park resulting in no new incidents of dog fouling over the last three weeks.
North Devon Council’s Executive Member for Environment, Councillor Rodney Cann, says: “We’re really stepping up our efforts to address these anti-social habits, particularly dog fouling, littering and flytipping, which are a terrible blight on our beautiful district. These bikes will be an invaluable tool for our officers and they are also a greener way to travel!”
Neighbourhood Officer, Ray Jones, says: “The bikes give us chance to nip about and cover more ground than we could on foot. We are more likely to spot someone littering or fouling and have a good chance of getting to them in time to issue a penalty notice. We are able to target more problem areas, and using the spray paint, we hope to deter dog fouling and let everyone know we are on the lookout for those responsible.”
Dog fouling is the latest issue being addressed as part of the council’s Clear Messages campaign, which aims to raise awareness of environmental issues such as littering, fly-tipping and responsible dog ownership. Failure to clean up after your dog can result in a fixed penalty notice of £80 with a maximum fine of £1000.