Illegal Waste Traders
How many times have you driven out into the countryside and have seen scrap tyres just dumped in the hedge. Or in a passing place, there is an old sofa and what looks like the remains of a house clearance? When it comes to “waste”, the whole country is plagued by illegal waste traders. Whether this be household waste being piled and left into illegally leased properties or fly tipped, people in Transit vans are collecting scrap cars and paying cash or simply people operating without the necessary permits and licences. The cost of these illegal activities are costing the country Billions of pounds each year. The figures are alarming and unfortunately the government budgets are so far stretched to police this that these practices are happening right under our noses without penalty.
We at Autospares and Salvage are an Insurance Salvage Management company. This means that we have direct contracts with insurance companies to recover their salvage, store and either re-market the salvage through an online auction platform or break down the vehicles (category B write offs) and supply these parts back into insurance company channels and trade/public markets.
Our company is split into three areas, the salvage, the parts and the scrap cars. The initial thought of a scrap yard is that of days gone by, the owner with oily muddy boots on, a yapping Alsatian on a chain in the corner and cars balancing on top of each other in a precarious fashion all whilst wading through gallons of sloppy mud and oil. This stereotypical image couldn’t be further from reality , certainly in our case and that of others within our nationwide insurance network group. The serious investment in equipment to maximise return from materials are quite frankly, astonishing.
So whats the issue? Over the last decade its been well documented that scrap prices have been high especially in the non ferrous metals, such as copper, lead, aluminium etc. This has led to a meteoric rise in metal thefts and within the UK. Catalytic converters on vehicles contain precious metals such as Platinum, Rhodium and palladium. The prices in such metals are pretty much constant and don’t fluctuate too much but they remain high. The knock on affect in this is the rise of the unlicensed scrap car collector and theft. The Illegal operators in the world aren’t spending and reinvesting in sites, permits, equipment in order to legally recycle the waste.
I need this car scrapping
A very common sight nowadays in Northamptonshire and nationwide is that of a flatbed recovery truck carrying a scrap car on the back going to weigh in at their local haunt and get paid cash (potentially) . Generally these people advertise on Facebook and such social media platforms and can go and pay cash. How you ask? Because they aren’t registered anywhere and can fly under the radar. ” I’ve got a car to scrap and need it taking away today, I’ll just give it to someone and they’ll take care of it for me ?”. Not necessarily! Will an illegal waste trader take care of your paperwork? Will DVLA know that you aren’t the registered keeper anymore? and will you obtain a Certificate of Destruction (COD) from the illegal operator? Probably not! Would you take that risk? Send your End of Life Vehicle to a proper established & permitted site.
No Cash for Scrap
Since December 2012, an amendment to the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 1964, that regulates the scrap metal industry, stated that it was now illegal to pay cash for scrap, either at purchase or at sale of. So how has this affected our industry? For the majority of us that have permits given by the Environmental agency and waste carriers licenses, it has impacted negatively. In the main, most people don’t mind receiving payment via bank transfer, this is mostly common practice but for the remaining that want cash where will they go?
When scrapping a vehicle, it should only be done through permitted legal sites, that way you guarantee that it will be recycled correctly and you’re doing your bit for the environment. Look for peoples Environmental Agency permit number.
There are non permitted vehicle recycling sites popping up throughout the county and nationwide. In the main these sites are that of the old stereo type, oil, mud antifreeze seeping into the ground with no care or thought for the environment, the only thought is that of profit. Every company needs to make a profit, but at what cost?
Profit is easily earned for the illegal traders, no insurance to pay, no VAT or taxes to pay, they don’t pay for the necessary permits and licenses and are removed from all costs involved in upholding the criteria to remain permitted. Sounds like a win win situation for the unlicensed trader.
So not just in our sector, all waste sectors when you are disposing of anything, please check out who you are dealing with.
For more information on where to find a permitted site in your area see the .Gov website here: https://www.gov.uk/find-vehicle-scrapyard