Skip firm owner convicted

Published on 26 February 2015

A COMPANY responsible for leaving an unlicensed skip on a busy street, which then led to a car accident, has been prosecuted in the first case of its kind in Leicester.

Leicester magistrates heard how an unlicensed skip belonging to Blue Skips Ltd was left without lights or traffic cones in Evington Road last August, and was hit by a passing motorist.

Richard Mumford, the operator of Blue Skips Ltd, pleaded guilty by letter on Thursday, February 26, to an offence of leaving the unlicensed skip in the highway.

Mumford, aged 39, of Ash Drive, Syston, was fined £400 and ordered to pay £600 in costs, along with a £40 victim surcharge.

The accident followed a string of warning letters to Blue Skips Ltd from Leicester City Council's City Wardens - between 2013 and 2014, the council sent 16 warning letters to Blue Skips Ltd warning them about placing unlicensed skips on highways in the city.

An application to place the skip in Evington Road was rejected by the city council on August 14, 2014, because the firm didn’t specify where exactly it would be.

Blue Skips Ltd was warned that unless a license was granted, any skip left there would be unlicensed.

However the firm placed the unlicensed skip in Evington Road on August  16.

A few days later on August 18, motorist Jenny Rowley wrote off her car after colliding with skip, which had been left there with no warning lights or cones. 

The driver, who suffered neck pain as a result of the accident, has since settled compensation with the firm. 

Leicester assistant city mayor for neighbourhood services, Cllr Sarah Russell, said: “The licensing laws for skips are there to ensure they are placed out of the way of pedestrians and traffic, and don’t cause a danger to people.

“This unfortunate case shows just how much of a danger unlicensed skips can cause – in this case leading to a serious car accident.

“We had contacted Blue Skips Ltd numerous times to try to get the firm to comply with the law, but they repeatedly failed to do so.

“Prosecution was the only option left to us, and I hope this action now encourages firms to take the right steps to make sure they’re properly licensed.”