Be careful about being lazy with your trash bin – or you just might be slapped with a £1,000 fine. In Bedford, at least, the local authority just issued warning letters explaining this potential fine. The council chiefs explain that the bins on the pavements can be hazardous to blind people.
Government Condemns Fines
The new threat comes on the back of the Government condemnation of such a fine, explaining that it would be draconian punishment for a small infraction. Ministers have said that they will be coming up with a law that would strip councils of the ability to levy such large fines.
The letters went to over 65,000 homes in Bedford, however, and said that people will have 24 hours to bring their bins back into the yard.
Heavy Handed Approach
As one Bedford resident said, in response to the stiff penalty threat, “It’s an absolute waste of council money and time to have people walking the streets checking if someone has put their bin away. I understand the principle of keeping the streets clean but the council has put across its point in the wrong way. It is being way too heavy-handed.”
A spokesman for the authority explained why they are taking such drastic measures. As he said, “We’ve been working with Sight Concern Bedford and the Royal National Institute of Blind People to encourage households to put their wheelie bins away, to help make pavements safer for blind and partially sighted people.”
Time will tell if the Bedford area will really go through with the drastic fines which are more severe than are the fines for shoplifting and for many other criminal acts.