Business trio deny being responsible for Fforestfach tyre fire
THREE people have appeared in court to deny being responsible for a fire which brought chaos to the city.
Scott Phillips, 43, Dorothy Thomas, 59 and her husband Peter Thomas, 65, were all directors of Globally Greener Solutions Limited.
The charges the trio face relate to a fire which broke out at Fforestfach Industrial Estate on June 16, 2011 which took three weeks to extinguish.
Prosecutor Nicolas Jones told city magistrates: "The prosecution say that Scott Phillips, in capacity as director of Globally Greener knowingly caused approximately 5,000 tonnes of tyre fluff to be deposited inside unit 5.
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"Peter Thomas and Dorothy Thomas knowingly permitted this to be done and in turn all the defendants unlawfully emptied that waste in unit 5," said Mr Jones.
He said the company had been paid £261,000 to accept the waste material and he said the company would have needed a separate permit, which he said they did not have.
"The activity had to be regulated and controlled. The correct infrastructure has to be put in place so as to prevent, or adequately reduce the risk of environmental pollution and the risk of fire," he added.
Mr Jones said the prosecution allege the fire which later broke out caused "major disruption" to schools and businesses as well as pollution to water courses and air pollution.
He said the prosecution allege that during the handling of the fire, environment agency staff discovered waste including cardboard, wood and chemicals had been put in a neighbouring unit.
He said they had been "unlawfully deposited".
He said the Environment Agency had been left with a £200,000 bill for removing the waste from unit 4, and another bill of £1.6 million jointly footed by the agency and Swansea Council.
He said the trio could face sentences of five years on each charge or an unlimited fine if found guilty and asked magistrates to decline jurisdiction.
Phillips, of Main Road, Bryncoch, and the Thomases, of Heol Cadifor, Penlan, indicated they will enter a not guilty plea for all four charges.
All three deny causing waste to be deposited at unit 4 without a permit between March 2008 and November 2011. They also deny keeping controlled waste in a manner likely to cause pollution or harm to human health between March 2008 and June 2012. The three also face two charges of contravening the requirements of an environmental permit between March 2008 and April 2010 and between April 2010 and June 2011.
They will next appear in front of magistrates on October 23.