Duty of care
Transportation of waste is subject to control under the Duty of Care
regulations in the Environmental Protection Act 1990. This means that every
producer of waste must take all reasonable steps to look after any waste
they have and prevent its illegal disposal by others. For recycling enterprises
involved in transporting commercial wastes, this means setting up a system
for the issue and receipt of transfer notes for waste, records of which have
to be retained for a minimum of two years.
The Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)
publishes an introductory leaflet and a Code of practice on the duty of care
(ISBN 0-11-753210), available from the DEFRA Publications Unit by
telephoning 020 7873 9090.
Registration of carriers
The Controlled Waste (Registration of Carriers and Seizure of Vehicles)
Regulations 1991 requires Waste Regulation Authorities to establish and
maintain a register of waste carriers. Under the Control of Pollution
(Amendment) Act 1989, only registered carriers can carry controlled wastes.
Most smaller recycling enterprises are likely to be exempt from this
requirement to register, but it is still necessary to check this with a Waste
Regulation Officer at the regional Environment Agency office and obtain
an exemption under regulation 2 of the Controlled Waste Regulations.
For any road going vehicles over 3.5 tons a special Operators Licence is
required local Road Haulage Associations can provide details.
Whatever your recycling activity, it is essential that you have adequate insurance
cover. This does not mean full cover for every eventuality, but thinking through
what is appropriate for your needs, considering the risks involved and what you
can afford. It is worth contacting the CRN, who work with insurance providers
to offer good value sector specific insurance of all types.
A social enterprise can be sued if an accident results from its negligence or
from the negligence of its paid or voluntary workers. This type of insurance
will cover against liability for injury to any member of the public and damage
This insurance is compulsory for social enterprises employing workers. It
insures against claims for injury or disease, made by employees. For further
information ask for the leaflet Short guide to the Employers Liability
(Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969, which is available from the Health
and Safety Executive.
It may be worthwhile insuring volunteers against any loss of earnings
resulting from accidents or sickness that happen while they are working
on your enterprise. Consult your insurance broker about this.