A Wimbledon business has criticised the council after three of its workers were sick after having to clear yet another illegal fly-tip

Merton Council has been criticised after workers from a Wimbledon business were sick "due to the smell and heat" after clearing an illegal fly-tip.

April Saunders works at Reston Waste and says fly-tipping is a persistent issue outside their business in Weir Road.

She told the Wimbledon Times they have cleared at least 15 fly-tips in her time, with it all culminating this week when three people had to be sick after clearing the latest dump.

"It wasn't a pretty sight," she said.

"With the heat as well the waste has got a strong disgusting smell."

"We had to stop our employees trying to clear it and currently trying to think of another way of clearing the rubbish without putting our employees through that again as it’s a major health risk to everyone around it."

Ms Saunders said on one occasion last month they spoke with the council on the phone about the possibility of them helping to clear a fly-tip.

She added the council "promised" to do this but never saw it through.

Wimbledon Times:

"We are extremely let down by the council letting fly-tipping occur so frequently down Weir Road and never clearing it.

"A few members of the public have suggested on Twitter to put cctv down here as it does happen so frequently to try and catch out the people that are doing it."

When contacted about this, cabinet member for adult social care, health and the environment, Councillor Tobin Byers said they take a zero tolerance approached towards people who dump their waste.

"We are committed to investigating incidents of fly-tipping and prosecuting offenders through our team of enforcement officers," he said.

"We also offer advice and guidance to residents and businesses on how to responsibly manage their waste so people can make the right choice.

“Whenever incidents of fly-tipping are observed, it is important that people report it and any information on the fly-tippers on our dedicated online reporting system.

We have reviewed our system and have no record of Reston Waste reporting the persistent fly-tipping in Weir Road. A lot of the land in Weir Road is privately owned so the council would not be responsible for clearing the rubbish away in certain areas."

But Ms Saunders argued that it shouldn't be just down the business to manage.

"It is always left down to Reston Waste to clear the rubbish which isn’t fair," she said.

"The council need to help us in managing this.

"Ultimately we want to help the environment and stop this fly-tipping but we need the council's help on this to try and put a stop to it altogether."

Councillor Byers said that any future fly-tipping incidents should be reported through Merton's dedicated channels.

"Fly-tipping has been on the increase nationally and Merton is no different in this trend," he added.

"Fly-tipping is a criminal offence, it is anti-social, has a significant environmental impact and is costly for the council to clear up.

"The council has a dedicated enforcement team of officers, covering a number of environmental issues, who have the skills and knowledge required to effectively tackle fly-tipping.

"As part of our strategy and in conjunction with our external enforcement provider we will look to increase the number of officers we have to undertake enforcement activities and issue fixed penalty notices."

A council spokeswoman said: "Reporting incidents through the dedicated council reporting channels enables us to both investigate incidents and either make arrangements to clean the area or advise private land owners of their responsibility.”