A MALVERN man and Worcester woman have been fined for littering after being caught throwing their cigarette ends out of their car windows.
The woman was spotted by one of Malvern Hills District Council’s community and environmental protection officers committing the offence at the traffic lights on the A449 Worcester Road at Powick on April 25.
In a separate incident on the same day, the man was caught tossing a cigarette at the traffic lights on Pickersleigh Road at the junction with the B4208.
Both offenders were issued with £75 fixed penalty notices for littering, which is a criminal offence under the Environmental Protection Act 1990.
Coun Bronwen Behan, responsible for environment on Malvern Hills District Council, said: “Littering is illegal and I hope this sends a very clear message that we will not tolerate people who thoughtlessly and selfishly blight our district.
“Cigarette ends are a particular problem as they are difficult to clean up, can take up to ten years to decompose and as filters are made of plastic contain toxins which can damage our environment.
“Our message is very simple – don’t drop it, bin it.”
Littering is an increasing problem across the UK, costing councils about £800million in clean up costs.
The Government has introduced new powers to tackle the problem which came into force in April.
The maximum fine has increased to £150 and drivers can be fined if litter is seen being throw from their vehicle, even if they are not the ones responsible.
Malvern Hills District Council will be seeking approval from councillors this month to introduce the higher fine and make use of the new law.