BARELY weeks after council cleared up an unslightly illegal dump site in Pakenham, illegal dumpers have returned to the site to pile on the trash.
The empty Pakenham street, which was involved in a string of suspicious fires, was cleared by Cardinia Shire Council earlier this month.
Yet last week, the Gazette returned to the site to find one car in the act – illegally dumping their unwanted rubbish on top of a growing Solid Drive trash pile.
Two young men in a white P-plater car were spotted offloading at about midday on Monday 23 February.
The site, which was formerly littered with old couches, petrol containers, broken glass, construction material and liquor bottles, was cleared by council on Thursday 5 February.
Now cases of beer, poles, cardboard and plastic waste is slowly filling the street, which is partly covered with broken glass and damaged light poles.
Council’s operations co-ordinator Mark Howard said clearing illegal dump sites was a time-consuming, costly exercise which needed to be stopped.
“Unfortunately, the incidence of illegal dumping is rising steadily in Cardinia Shire. In 2013-’14, council’s operations crew spent just over 1200 hours removing illegally dumped rubbish around our municipality, at a cost of almost $140,000,” he said.
“Every hour the crew spends removing this rubbish is time not spent conducting road and drainage maintenance works.”
Council is committed to catching the culprits, and offenders have been caught in the past according to spokesperson Paul Dunlop.
“Council’s compliance officers investigate each complaint regarding dumped rubbish, and where the person responsible is identified, council seeks to prosecute.
“Council has previously successfully prosecuted people responsible for illegal rubbish dumping.”
According to Pakenham police, one of the dumped couches left at Solid Drive was set alight weeks ago when the wasteland was at its worst.
The couch, surrounded by long dry out grass, was set alight about 2.40am on Tuesday 27 January – within hours of two separate suspicious fires in the Pakenham area.
If you see someone illegally dumping, call Crimestoppers on 1800 333 000 or visit www.crimestoppers.com.au
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