£80 fine for dropping a cigarette stub

@Asylum (48281)
Manchester, England
November 15, 2015 4:45am CST
Littering is a major problem in England at present, which does make the streets look extremely untidy and costs a great deal of money to constantly clean the towns. Manchester City Council, along with many other local authorities in England, has recently begun a campaign to put a stop to this. They have also employed many inspectors to walk around the city centre and shopping precincts to issue tickets to people that are seem littering. Yesterday I was stood outside the Arndale centre when a man close by dropped his cigarette stub on the floor. Unfortunately for him there was an Environmental Officer nearby who noticed this and came over to issue a ticket. After she had left I could not resist asking him what the fine was, which turned out to be £80. I am in favour of taking action to resolve this problem, but cannot help feeling that £80 for a first offence involving a cigarette is completely disproportionate. It would be more realistic to fine someone £10 or £20, then maybe £80 for repeat offences.
11 people like this
11 responses
@TheHorse (65735)
• Pleasant Hill, California
7 Mar 17
I agree with you. That seems like a lot. "Progressive discipline would be more fair." Here in States, I DO with texting and driving laws were enforced. Our accident rate is way up.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
7 Mar 17
Since that day I have never seen another person patrolling the streets in this manner. I suspect that the employees were given targets to reach, so they were not inclined to be understanding.
• United States
15 Nov 15
That is getting off cheap. In California, the fine for littering is $1,000.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
15 Nov 15
The major difference is that this has been the practice in California for some time and people expect it. It has only just been introduced here so I would have thought that a short term of lower fines would be appropriate followed by higher fines in maybe a year.
1 person likes this
• United States
15 Nov 15
@Asylum Put out a few public service announcements, then sock em hard. Word of mouth stops the bad behavior.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
18 Nov 15
@ElizabethWallace So far I have seen no announcement that fines have been put into force.
1 person likes this
@boiboing (12465)
• Northampton, England
15 Nov 15
If I drove a few miles over the speed limit I'd get a £60 fine and three points on my license and an increase on my insurance costs for years to come or I have to take a day off work to attend an expensive speed awareness course. On that basis £80 for littering doesn't seem like a bit deal. You can be sure that person will put their stub in the bin next time.
@boiboing (12465)
• Northampton, England
15 Nov 15
@Asylum The problem is that smokers don't recognise butts as litter
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
15 Nov 15
@boiboing I accept that it constitutes litter, but not on the scale as a discarded carton with left over chips and gravy or an empty plastic coffee cup.
• United States
15 Nov 15
@Asylum This is the single largest source of litter in most p,aces. Stop that and the improvement would be significant.
1 person likes this
@cahaya1983 (10053)
• Malaysia
15 Nov 15
I know here litterbugs can be fined anywhere from RM200-RM2000 (that's about £30-£300) depending on the seriousness of the offence. I guess sometimes they just have to impose strict rules like that so people would take things seriously.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
18 Nov 15
I agree with applying such fines, but feet that they should be introduced more gradually to deter people without appearing to target individuals. The Metrolink tram system introduced on the spot fines for ticket evasion, but began with £10 and later they became £100.
1 person likes this
@cahaya1983 (10053)
• Malaysia
19 Nov 15
@Asylum Oh wow that's a huge increase. Interestingly I can't find any info for for fare dodging fines here, probably because it's not very common.
@allknowing (65075)
• India
15 Nov 15
There is now guarantee that this offender will have no more offences to his credit.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
15 Nov 15
The fine was issued by means of a ticket on the spot, so it obviously did not take into account any previous offences and intended as a first time fine. I feel that a lower fine would have been appropriate and a further amount charged at a later time if the person had previous offences.
@allknowing (65075)
• India
15 Nov 15
@Asylum I said no more offences. He may have had offences in the past but may not have had to pay so much.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
15 Nov 15
@allknowing This is not likely because the lady issuing the ticket would not be aware of any previous offences.
@Susan2015 (20580)
• United States
15 Nov 15
That's a hefty fee for dropping a stub. But I would like that job for sure.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
15 Nov 15
It has to be annoying because he would pass several people doing the same during the next few minutes.
1 person likes this
@Susan2015 (20580)
• United States
15 Nov 15
@Asylum He was the one who got caught.
@moondebi (1213)
• Bangalore, India
27 Nov 15
The fine is a bit on the higher side, but there should be exemplary punishment system to keep such nuisance makers at bay.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
27 Nov 15
I would not advocate a small fine for habitual offenders because the practice needs to be stopped, but I would expect a more moderate amount for a first offence during the early weeks of the ruling. The Metrolink tram system introduced a £10 fine for travelling without a ticket, which was raised to £100 after a reasonable period. This seems a much fairer approach.
@jstory07 (67037)
• Roseburg, Oregon
27 Nov 15
That is a big fine for a first time offense. Is there trash cans around to use.
@whiteream (3521)
• United States
16 Nov 15
That seems like alot but I guess, in the long run it's a good thing.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
16 Nov 15
Stopping litter is certainly worthwhile, but there is no justification in such a severe beginning to the system.
@youless (91494)
• Guangzhou, China
15 Nov 15
I think Singapore is the most strict country in this aspect. You can not littering in public, and you can't even drink the water in the subway station. They punish quite a lot of money for it. Although we don't litter, but we also have to be much more careful to the rules. Such as I put my bottle of water inside my bag rather than holding in my hand.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
15 Nov 15
It is more understandable in a country where it is established, whereas it has very recently been imposed here.
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (157275)
• Switzerland
15 Nov 15
I believe that the fine proportional to the wealth of individual is a good solution. It's how it works here, if you only earn, let's say a thousand dollars a month, a fine of 10 dollar is a realistic fine for littering. If you earn ten times more, you pay 100 dollars.
@Asylum (48281)
• Manchester, England
15 Nov 15
That would probably not be considered acceptable in England. Introducing a fine here is a worthwhile idea, but fining someone so unrealistically is more likely to result in resentment than compliance. There are people here who receive smaller fines than that in court for vandalism or assaulting people.
1 person likes this