DORSET Waste Partnership says it is taking “more action than ever” after fly-tipping incidents rose by almost 40 per cent nationwide.

Data analysed by the Local Government Association (LGA) revealed fly-tipping incidents increased by 39.6 per cent from 714,637 in 2012/2013 to 997,553 in 2017/2018.

Meanwhile, action from DWP led to 14 prosecutions and 115 fixed penalty notices last year.

Gemma Clinton, head of service at the DWP, said: “The DWP is working closely with Dorset Police and our enforcement team is taking more action than ever before, with 14 successful prosecutions and 115 fixed penalty notices issued in the last fiscal year. But the best way to fight fly-tipping is for local authorities and the public to work together.

“Residents should report fly-tips to us, only use reputable businesses or individuals if you need help moving your rubbish and get a waste transfer note when handing items to someone else to dispose of.

“You should also use your local household recycling centre whenever you can.”

She added: “We share the public’s frustration with fly-tipping; it’s a blight on our beautiful county.

“But we’re taking this problem very seriously and will continue to work toward eradicating this illegal activity.”

The LGA also found that nobody convicted of fly-tipping since ministers introduced new guidelines in 2014 had been given the maximum £50,000 fine or 12 months in prison by the courts.

Councils have the power to issue fixed penalty notices for smaller instances of fly-tipping.

Funding pressures mean council enforcement teams cannot keep up with the spiralling cases of illegal waste dumping, the LGA said.

Councils took action on 494,034 incidents in 2017/2018, up by just under 70,000 cases in five years.

The LGA is calling on the government to review guidance to the courts to ensure the worst fly-tipping offenders face tougher sentences.

The association also said that, with councils in England facing an £8 billion funding gap by 2025, the spending review needs to ensure they have the funding required to investigate and prosecute fly-tippers.