More than 100 illegally dumped tyres have been discovered on a small beach at Inver in south Donegal.
It is feared that many more could be hidden by seaweed. Or they could still be lodged in the small river that enters the sea at the secluded cove. Furthermore, there is no way of knowing how many have already been washed out to sea.
Cllr Noel Jordan (SF) was contacted by two local women who made the discovery while walking on the shore at Brenter, Inver.
The councillor who is himself from the Inver area was horrified at the scale of the problem.
“It is the worst case of illegal dumping I have ever seen,” he told the Donegal Post. “There are tyres of all shapes and sizes, from cars, tractors and HGVs.
“A big question is how they got there. If someone was drawing them down in a trailer or truck they would have to pass under a narrow dry arch bridge and there just isn’t room. There is barely room for a car.”
Cllr Jordan has been working closely with Donegal County Council on the matter.
“The litter warden has been down to take a look and he is carrying out an investigation,” said the councillor. “It does not look as if the tyres came in on the tide.”
One possibility being explored by investigators is that the tyres were dumped into the river and carried down to the beach. Indeed, there are a number of tyres clearly visible in the river.
This is particularly worrying, given that tyres leach hazardous chemicals into the water and soil around them. The fact that this is being carried down river into the sea means these chemicals are causing the maximum damage.
Donegal County Council is working at having the them removed.
Tyres do not biodegrade. As well as being harmful, they were very unsightly.
There are regulations in place surrounding their disposal, as well as strict regulations regarding the stockpiling of tyres on farms.
Indeed, a charge is built into the price paid by consumers that covers that environmental treatment of waste tyres which are fully recyclable.
Photos: Siobhán McNamara
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