Around 100 used tyres have been dumped on the shoreline of Loch Ness in a “scandalous” case of fly-tipping.
Ness District Salmon Fishery Board discovered the rubbish on the afternoon of Sunday, January 28, while filming in the beauty spot close to Drumnadrochit.
At the head of Urquhart Bay, the village boasts stunning views on the Northern shore of the Loch, popular with those seeking a sighting of the infamous Loch Ness monster.
The used tyres were found near a layby, at the bottom of a very steep escarpment making a clean-up operation “very difficult”, according to the board.
Some of the debris could have floated in to the loch and sank which may be “impossible” to retrieve.
Director of the fishery board, Brian Shaw told STV News: “We were out on the loch doing some filming on the layby which is very popular because there’s a great view of Urquhart Castle.
“We pulled in there and as I looked over the edge – I had never stopped at this layby before – and lo and behold there was about 100 tyres at the bottom of the hill which was pretty shocking.
“I didn’t realise how steep it was, it was almost like looking over the edge of a castle.
“Anybody who is doing this, they must have known recovery was going to be very difficult in a place like that.
“It’s just shocking and scandalous.
“This is a recent dumping – we can tell because the vegetation is flattened and the tyres are lying on top of it.
“We don’t want this to be a long-term problem.”
A clean-up operation may prove tricky due to the steep incline of the shoreline with the danger of more of the tyres drifting in to the loch.
Mr Shaw added: “I’ve never seen anything like this because Loch Ness is generally a very clean environment.
“That makes it even more shocking – that someone would even consider doing this.
“Some of the tyres are in the water for sure, it’s almost like one of these penny waterfall things, they’re just waiting to drop in.
“It’s a very deep shoreline and very rocky which makes it difficult to access.
“We want to try and get as many of them away before they end up in the loch.”
A spokesperson for the Scottish Environment Protection Agency said: “On Monday, January 29 we were made aware by the Ness District Salmon Fisheries Board of a large quantity of tyres disposed of on the banks of Loch Ness near Drumnadrochit.
“A Highland Council officer has attended the site and enquiries are ongoing.
“SEPA are investigating the incident together with the Council, which has its own plans in place for the safe removal of the tyres. We will continue to liaise with partners until this is complete.
“To report any suspicious activity, members of the public can contact SEPA 24/7 online at sepa.org.uk/report or by calling 0800 80 70 60.
“Members of the public can also check SEPA’s online database at sepa.org.uk/wastecarriers for registered waste carriers, to check that anyone they hire to move their waste is doing so with the correct authorisation.”
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