THE number of tyres being fly tipped across the UK has risen by almost a quarter in the past year, according to analysis of government data by Kwik Fit.
Figures from the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) show that the number of incidents of the fly tipping of tyres reported to local authorities in England has risen from 12,076 in 2019-20 to 15,076 in 2020-21, an increase of 25 per cent.
The figure is even more striking when considering that the tyre industry reported a decrease in sales of replacement tyres between the two years of around 14 per cent
In the North West region the number of incidents rose by 80 per cent and in the West Midlands by 67 per cent.
Kwik Fit's analysis of the Defra data shows that in only one English region did the number of incidents fall over the last year - the East of England saw a five per cent decrease.
Although the past decade has seen a steady reduction in the cases of tyres being illegally dumped - even before the pandemic - the figure remains high and is equivalent to around 35 incidents per day.
Roger Griggs, communications director at Kwik Fit, said: "There is absolutely no excuse for a tyre to be fly tipped. Tyre dealers must ensure that used tyres are dealt with by a registered waste company and those companies have a duty to process them responsibly. Although they need to be covered by a ‘waste' licence, used tyres still have value as a raw material and therefore it makes even less sense for them to be fly tipped."
Kwik Fit already works with Murfitts Industries, the UK's leading tyre recycling company, to ensure its customers' tyres are processed responsibly but now the two companies will be working together even more closely as part of the same group after Kwik Fit's parent company, European Tyre Enterprise Ltd, announced this week that it has agreed to acquire Murfitts.
Mr Griggs added: "End of life tyres have significant value remaining in them and it is important to capture and reuse the raw materials wherever possible. Not only does this prevent them from entering the waste steam, but it reduces the amount of new material that is needed.
"We encourage all motorists shopping for new tyres to ask what is going to happen to their old tyre and ensure that it is going to be handled responsibly."