MORE than 4,000 warning notices to prevent fly-tipping were issued last year as part of a crackdown in Blackburn with Darwen.

The orders were served on occupiers and owners where land was deemed to be at risk and put up in hotspot areas. Some were also issued to people who had dumped illegal waste.

Blackburn with Darwen Council dealt with 2,197 incidents between April and December, compared to 2,880 for the previous financial year.

Local authorities across East Lancashire reported 8,720 incidents of fly-tipping from April to December last year, at a cost of £363,400 to councils.

The number had risen overall across Blackburn with Darwen, Burnley, Ribble Valley Hyndburn and Pendle, with 8,074 incidents in 2011/12.

Blackburn with Darwen’s executive member for environmental improvement and sustainability Councillor Faryad Hussain said: “Fly-tipping causes great disruption and upset as well as being a health hazard. We investigate any incidents of fly-tipping and we prosecute where possible. Recently we’ve had several successful prosecutions where people were handed large fines and the chances are if you do it you will be caught.”

In December, Darwen councillor Paul Browne demanded a major drive against the offence in the borough. He called for a stronger campaign of education, monitoring, prosecution and publicity to eradicate the problem.

Hyndburn had the lowest number of incidents of the boroughs.

The council offers a bulky waste recycling service entitling each household to one collection per month and prosecute an average of ten fly-tipping offenders each year.

Coun Clare Pritchard said all cases were investigated and urged people to report any suspicions.