Watchful eyes will be ready for illegal dumpers in Wabush as security cameras are set up in the area.
Six covert cameras will be placed in hotspots around the municipal boundaries and planning boundaries, where illegal dumping of garbage has been found before.
Melanie LaFosse, Municipal Enforcement Officer for Wabush, said the cameras will enable the town to help the RNC charge anyone caught throwing garbage away in an undesignated area.
“Finding out who owns the garbage is next to impossible. It may have their name on it, but it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s theirs. I could take a piece of garbage like my heat and light bill over to someone’s house and throw it in their garbage.”
Having a camera to capture the faces, vehicle, and license plate will help provide the evidence which can lead to a maximum fine of $10,000 for citizens.
LaFosse said the cameras will be hidden in anonymous locations, and not in places of residential concern for privacy.
“They’ll be in wooded areas, sandpits, areas people may frequent. But nowhere that will be private. It’s not an invasion of privacy if you’re doing something illegal on town property.”
“Most of it happens on a Sunday, or if they don't get to it on a Saturday before 4pm...” - Melanie LaFosse
The cameras are equipped with a 3.1 megapixel or 1080p HD lens, shooting colour images by day and monochrome at night. Capable of capturing up to 50 feet, the cameras turn on with heat sensors and can take up to 40,000 photos in weather as cold as -40C.
LaFosse said with the incinerator site open six days a week and two annual cleanups, there’s no good reason for anyone to dump garbage illegally.
“Most of it happens on a Sunday, or if they don't get to it on a Saturday before 4pm. So they'll just drop it off in front of the gates or on a back road. It's just laziness.”
LaFosse was unsure if the fines would go to the municipality, but said because it’s the RNC making the charges it will likely go to the provincial government.
Identical cameras have been used with great success in Conception Bay South, where multiple charges were made against illegal dumpers.