A huge pile of commercial rubbish, thought to include hospital waste, has been fly-tipped in a country lane in Hampshire. The mound of mechanically-processed refuse appeared on a path off Greywell Road in Upton Grey on Saturday.
Local councillors said the pile contained sharp instruments and looked like residue from a recycling centre.
The waste has been cordoned off until it can be assessed by the Environment Agency and removed by the council.
Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council said it was investigating the incident, described by ward councillor Mark Ruffell as the worst case of fly tipping he had ever seen.
It certainly looks like autoclaved, shredded clinical waste that should have gone to landfill or better to a cement kiln as an energy resource.
Clearly, some processor will be in the difficult position of their figures not adding up and that discrepancy, if found, will hopefully help identify the culprits.
This reminds me that several years ago, individuals at the Environment Agency – it was never official policy – hinted repeatedly that the Duty of Care of hospitals to ensure appropriate disposal go their clinical wastes should be satisfied by, as it turned out, infection control nurses trailing waste collection vehicles to ensure that it is taken to the appropriately licensed premises.
Of course, one might reasonably question whether that was more appropriately a task for the regulators. How it happened that no nurse was involved in a vehicle accident while engaging in this charade in the stead of those who are paid to regulate is simply a matter for good fortune.
Let us hope that EA will now do better, and help to identify those responsible.