Somerset Council has introduced some new measures at its household waste recycling centre (HWRC) sites to “cut congestion, exclude out-of-county visitors, tackle illegal commercial users, improve services, maintain efficiency and enhance safety”.
The Council explained that with Somerset’s rising population, increasing numbers of vehicles and growing levels of waste, that “figures for visits to its 16 recycling sites have jumped by 400,000 in the past few years to well over 1.5 million annually”.
It says that to help ensure swift, smooth and safer visits to these sites, the very largest trucks and trailers no longer have access, “so most users are not held up or put at risk by heavily laden or hard-to-manoeuvre vehicles” and that “those coming in from nearby counties with vans, pick-ups or trailers, who add to Somerset council taxpayers’ costs, will be told to use their own recycling sites”.
Commercial customers, already limited to 10 sites taking paid-for waste, face further restrictions to ensure they do not hold up local residents. To manage traffic at the busiest times, a small proportion of residents bringing in household waste will need to apply online to get a free, easy-to-use permit for their trailer, van or pick-up.
It adds that “trailers towed by cars need a free permit. Trailers cannot be towed into recycling sites by vans or pick-ups, and permits applications for trailers with vans or pick-ups are not be accepted. Multi-axle trailers cannot access sites. The vast majority of residents who bring their household waste in cars without trailers, including estates, 4x4s, people carriers and campervans, need no permit.”