What is Duty of Care?
Duty of Care is a legal requirement for those dealing with certain kinds of waste to take all reasonable steps to keep it safe and is set out in the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (EPA). It applies to anyone who is a holder of household, industrial and commercial waste, known as controlled waste.
As a business, you have a legal responsibility to ensure that you produce, store, transport and dispose of your business waste without harming the environment. This is called your duty of care.
The duty of care has no time limit. You are specifically responsible for your waste from when you produce it until you have transferred it to an authorised person, however your duty does not end when you hand over the waste to the next holder. It extends along the entire chain of management of your waste. If you think that your waste is not being managed correctly, you must take action to check and prevent this.
• segregate, store and transport your waste appropriately and securely, making sure that you do not cause any pollution or harm to human health
• check that your waste is transported and handled by people or businesses that are authorised to do so
• complete waste transfer notes, including a full, accurate description of the waste, to document all waste you transfer, and keep them as a record for at least two years.
If a waste carrier takes your waste away, you need to check that they are authorised to accept it.
The purpose of the Code of Practice is to give simple, clear and practical guidance on what those who import, produce, carry, keep, treat or dispose of controlled waste have to do to fulfil their legal duty of care obligations.
Is Duty of Care the same as Waste Transfer Note?
This is an understandable misconception, possibly due to many licenced waste carriers charging for Duty of Care Documentation as a separate document to Waste Transfer Notes.
• Duty of Care sets out your responsibilities under the code of practice as the producer of waste. The code is clear about your responsibilities as the waste producer in terms of how you store, keep, and dispose of waste.
• Waste Transfer Note is a legal requirement and certifies that as the producer of waste you are complying with your legal obligations.
Call the experts
As a waste producer do you know if you are compliant? Do you know how effective or if your waste disposal service represents value for money? Not sure? then talk to Principal Hygiene we can help you with advice and support ensuring you have the right services in place that delivers value for money, is compliant and meets your waste disposal needs.
Get a Clinical quote today or call us to discuss further, If you are unsure about the type of container you should be using or you have a mixed waste stream call us, we are on hand to provide advice and support.
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