The dangers vehicle litter amid sizzling temperatures
Litter thrown from passing vehicles such as glass bottles, cigarette butts and plastic can spark fires in this dry weather
The past ten days has seen 56 fires recorded on grass verges across England. These were near to the motorway and major A-road network managed by Highways England.
Recently, on the M5 in the Midlands, Highways England worked with the emergency services to support a serious fire involving a HGV that was carrying hay.
Highways England emergency planning officer, Frank Bird, said:
“Smoke from roadside fires can drift across motorways posing a hazard to drivers. We’ve seen an increase in fires on grass verges near some of our motorways, for example on the M42 in the Midlands.
“With the land being so dry, it often only takes a small spark to take hold. We’d urge people to avoid throwing any items from vehicles at any time, but particularly in these hot conditions. Please take all of your litter home with you or dispose of it in a proper manner.”
200,000 sacks of rubbish cleared every year
Drivers travelling in this heat wave are being advised to:
- Take a bottle of water with them before setting out to ensure they stay hydrated
- Plan and leave plenty of time for their journeys
- Check the weather forecast for their destination
- Check travel conditions before setting out and, where it is safe to do so, during journeys
- Ensure their cars are fit for the journey