There are multiple reasons you may want to accept fill onto your private land including things such as landscaping, land reclamation, and renovations. It's therefore important to be careful when accepting fill because cases of illegal fill can affect you greatly in terms of health and clean-up costs. Therefore, here are some tips to help you avoid or prevent such risks.
Contact Your Local Council Concerning the Fill
It is very important to contact your local council, especially the planning department prior to accepting the fill to find out whether a planning permit will be necessary before accepting the fill. When contacting your local council, make sure you inform them concerning the amount of fill that you intend to take and the exact place you plan to have it on your property.
Information concerning the exact place you want the fill on your land is important in determining whether placing it in that area will be a danger to wildlife, plants, and humans or whether it will pollute the watercourses.
Ask For Proof That the Fill Is Uncontaminated From the Supplier
Your fill supplier should be able to provide proof that the fill he or she is supplying does not contain any contaminants. You will be liable for any legal costs involved if contaminated fill is identified on your land. Therefore, you can request your supplier to have samples of the fill analysed in a lab and ask them to provide you with an original copy of the results.
If you still have any doubts, you can have the samples analysed independently to confirm the level of contaminants.
Record and Keep Copies of All the Documents
Keeping records is important to evaluate the credibility of the supplier and can help trace the original location of the fill in case of contaminated fill. Therefore, record the credentials of the suppliers including their names and addresses. Take the names and addresses of the transporters as well and take registration plates of the trucks. If possible, take pictures of the trucks too.
Supervise the Delivery of Fill
Make sure you supervise the delivery of clean fill material onto your land. The fill material may often be mixed with contaminants or wastes such as heavy metals, asbestos, rubble, petroleum, hydrocarbons and other materials that you may not be able to see. Do not accept fill that has visible contaminants such as wood, plastic, tiles, and bricks.
More info on clean fill can be found here.