Waste fire warning for summer season

Waste fire warning for summer season

Veolia and Shropshire Council call on the public to help prevent fires and practise safe waste disposal behaviours


With warmer weather expected as the summer continues, Veolia and Shropshire Council are calling on the public to safely dispose of their waste to help prevent fires. 

Hot barbecue coals, batteries and electricals can all cause fires, especially when mixing with waste that is drier than usual.

In January this year, Veolia revealed that only 43 per cent of the public were aware that lithium-ion batteries could cause fires when incorrectly discarded in household bins. 

During the summer months hot coals from barbeques are another common cause of preventable fires as they are often mixed with waste before they are fully extinguished.

This summer, Shropshire residents are being asked to play it safe with waste by checking their Council webpages for details of how to correctly dispose of electricals and batteries, and ensuring that barbeque coals are fully extinguished before they are thrown away.


Here’s how to safely dispose of electrical items and hot coals, to prevent them from combusting:



  • Batteries: They can be recycled at the kerbside. Please place in a clear plastic bag and put out on recycling day next to your recycling box.
  • Alternatively residents can take batteries to their local Household Recycling Centre, where they will be tuned into something new. Most supermarkets will also have a safe disposal point in store. Do not put batteries in household recycling and waste bins.
  • Hot coals from barbeques: Cover hot coals with sand and water to ensure they are completely cold (usually 2 days), before putting them in the general waste bin.
  • Electrical items (like toasters): Electrical items can be recycled and some households will even have a separate collection service for these materials. Residents are advised to check the council’s website (https://www.shropshire.gov.uk/recycling-and-rubbish/)  for information on the recycling services available at their property. Otherwise, take electrical items to the local Household Recycling Centre. Do not put them in your household recycling and waste bins.



Steve Mitchell, Veolia Director (West) said: “Items that generate heat and electricity can easily combust in the back of waste vehicles or at our recycling and waste facilities. This is extremely dangerous and can result in fires. 

“People also forget that batteries and electrical items can be recycled. We should be doing everything we can to capture these materials to preserve our precious resources and protect the green economy. When residents are unsure of what can and can’t be put in their household recycling and waste bins, they should play it safe and check their council website.”

For more information on what can and can’t go in your household recycling bin, check Shropshire Council's website (https://www.shropshire.gov.uk/recycling-and-rubbish/)