“Needles in recycling waste force Tewkesbury Borough Council to send 21 tonnes of rubbish to landfill.
“Hypodermic needles have contaminated 21 tonnes of recycling in Tewkesbury, forcing the borough council to send all of the rubbish to landfill.
“All of the recycling waste collected from blue bins in the borough gets hand sorted and needles have been found on a number of occasions since January this year.
“The needles pose a real threat to the health of workers when they sort through the borough’s rubbish at a material recycling facility near Bishop’s Cleeve.
“As a result the borough council is taking dramatic action to keep them safe
This “dramatic action” seems firstly improbably, and if correct a huge over-reaction that was likely to be unnecessary. It’s always a problem when needles appear on picking lines and every care must be taken to train staff and provide appropriate PPE including god quality gloves, even to agency and temp staff. A plan should exist to stop the line(s) and retrieve needles for appropriate disposal.
Scooping up an day’s throughput and dumping the entire lot, many vehicle loads, to landfill seems unnecessary and entirely inappropriate. It would also be costly but I suspect its the Council that takes the hit as its contractors will have ensured that the financial responsibility is not theirs.
If I were working for the Environment Agency I would now be asking very tough questions as to why this course of action was taken.