A mum-of-two was slapped with a £75 fine for fly-tipping after leaving her children’s old scooters out for the scrap man.
Primary school teacher Emma Reckless, 42, left the three toys, along with an unwanted parasol holder, against her fence for collection.
But she was stunned when a council Community Protection Officer knocked on her door on Tuesday (24/7) and told her she would receive a penalty for fly-tipping.
Mrs Reckless, who has a son, 11, and daughter, seven, says she regularly leaves household items outside her home in Bulwell, Nottingham, for the scrap man.
She has now been given two weeks to pay the fine or risk further legal action.
She said: “It was ridiculous and it really left me upset.
“The scooters weren’t obstructing the path or anything and it’s something the scrap man collects on a daily basis.
“When the woman came round she was wearing a black uniform, hat and an illuminous jacket and she did not introduce herself.
“She just said I had broken the 1990 Environment Act.
“I didn’t even know there was a such an Act – if I did I wouldn’t have broken it.
“She then took a photo of my driving licence.
“I was only trying to help the scrap man earn a living, it wasn’t obstructing the path and I would have taken it in if he hadn’t come.
“I thought she was a police officer so I rang them but they said she belonged to Nottingham City Council.
“I rang the team leader at the council and asked him why they were going round fining people without even warning or educating them.
“He told me that notices have been put on Twitter but not everyone goes on Twitter.
“Fly-tipping is people dumping things like old mattresses, not this
“I think it’s really sad that things have got to this, but I’d like to warn others about it.
“If they are going to fine people then they need to educate them.
“Leaving things out for the scrap-man is something that people on the street do all the time.”
Mrs Reckless put the scooter’s out for the scrap man after having a clear out of her garage.
City councillor Ginny Klein, who represents the Bulwell ward for the city council, said:
“We want to deter fly tipping but in this case it is not a fly tipping area.
“If people want to leave things out for the scrap man then so much the better, as it was her first time it would have been better to have just issued a warning.
“It is important to stress that city has a free waste collection service so people who are tempted to fly tip should be using this.”
Toby Neal, council portfolio holder for community protection, added: “Anything left out in the street without prior arrangements for collection or as part of normal bin collections could constitute fly-tipping.
“From household waste such as a mattresses left outside a house to a big pile of illegally dumped waste by a business or a builder – this is all fly tipping and it’s illegal.
“Residents in Nottingham City can avoid a fine for fly-tipping by booking a free bulky waste collection via our website.”