The discovery of another large fly-tip, this time on Karaka Rd in Parakao, has disheartened officials.

Gib board and other building materials litter the gravel road side, while 10m away domestic rubbish spews down the steep bank to the stream below.

A dead pig sits atop the pile, a fridge rests in the stream, and a mattress lies part way between the two piles.

In January last year, a large fly-tip, around 200m long, was reported in the Ngaiotonga Scenic Reserve, north of Russell. Then in December, another large pile was discovered on Russell Rd near Helena Bay.

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Whangarei District Council waste and drainage field officer Grant Alsop said he estimated the rubbish could had been at this site for over a year.

"We'll have a better idea of time when we cut into bags."

Mr Alsop is hoping to find items in the bags which could identify the culprits.

Gib board and other building materials are scattered on the side of the road. Photo/Michael Cunningham
Gib board and other building materials are scattered on the side of the road. Photo/Michael Cunningham

He said those responsible had no respect for the bush or the waterway.

"It's disgusting the way they pollute the environment."

When The Northern Advocate visited the site, we spotted a vehicle registration plate amongst the rubbish. Mr Alsop said the council were aware of it, and would be following it up.

Mr Alsop estimates the pile is about 25 to 30cu m in size but it is impossible to tell for sure due to the steep terrain.

"We don't know how deep it is."

He said Northland Regional Council told the Kaipara District Council but after a brief investigation, KDC determined it was on WDC land and passed the message on to him on June 27.

He visited the site the next day, and returned two days later to collect water samples.

Mr Alsop said the site is 500m on the Whangarei side of the boundary.

He took samples from upstream, in the middle of the rubbish and downstream to test for water pollution.

The results indicate the rubbish is polluting the stream.

He said while the upstream result showed some existing E. coli levels, the midstream result showed a higher level of E. coli in the stream.

Mr Alsop said an arborist will need to clear a tree out the way before the rubbish can be removed.

He said the road will need to be closed for a while and a traffic management plan is being prepared.

"We're going to have the crane in the middle of the road, to lower the bins down."

He said five or six people will be needed to clear the mess, and it will take them "a good part of a week".

Mr Alsop said work to clear the site will likely start the week beginning on July 17, dependent on the weather.

He estimates the clean up will cost between $10,000 and $20,000, with it depending largely on what contractors find once they get started.

He said due to the close proximity to Kaipara District Council land, KDC have agreed to contribute to the clean up costs.

According to the draft Waste Minimisation and Management Plan, illegal dumping costs the Whangarei District Council around $9,000 per month. This works out to more than $100,000 a year.

Mr Alsop said the council serve infringements of up to $400 for fly-tipping. He said the value of the penalties are graded, and depend on the quantity of rubbish concerned.

He said everyone who is identified in relation with this illegal dumping will be
sent a fine.