UK Small Businesses Losing up to 10.5 Days a Year to Unplanned Waste Emergencies

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Almost half of UK SMEs are losing up to 10.5 days of time a year removing emergency waste, including illegal fly-tipping, from their premises according to a survey of business owners released this week.

With each incident taking up to seven working hours on average to handle for 44.5 per cent of businesses, UK companies are missing out on vital working time and tackling a major obstacle to economic growth and productivity.

The results mean that, for a business dealing with emergency waste on an average monthly basis, more than half are likely to lose up to 84 working hours a year – the equivalent of 10.5 working days – dealing with this problem. This time can easily result in business losses of thousands of pounds per annum.

Research based on responses from 500 SME owners and decision makers UK wide also showed that a quarter (24.5 per cent) of small businesses have been victims of illegal fly tipping on their premises and two thirds of businesses don’t know who to call in a waste emergency.

Fly-tipping on small business premises was most prevalent in regions across London, the Midlands and North West and 77 per cent of businesses questioned said that this single issue can take contractors on average a full 24 hours to handle and remove compliantly.

Biffa commissioned the research ahead of launching a new rapid emergency waste removal service for UK businesses dealing with unexpected general, electrical or hazardous waste. This new premium service guarantees fast collection and disposal with response times starting from a little as three hours.

By dialling a national Freephone helpline, Biffa OneCall responds with fully compliant emergency waste removal 24 hours a day, seven days a week to businesses across the UK with its dedicated fleet of purpose built collection vehicles.

Jeff Anderson, managing director of Industrial & Commercial at Biffa says that unplanned waste costs small businesses big money which is why we set out to launch the new dedicated Biffa OneCall service.

“Time is precious for all businesses, but for SMEs working with limited resources, this is particularly pertinent.  Our research found that many businesses constantly face the challenge and the disruption of clearing up unwanted illegally discarded waste, build up's of uncollected waste and sometimes even hazardous wastes that others leave behind. This could be anything from an unexpected freezer breakdown, a hazardous waste or fuel spillage or just general waste  site clearances. Biffa OneCall is increasingly the solution for these types of situation, with nationwide coverage 24 hours per day, 7 days a week and 52 weeks a year.

“Many businesses have a regular waste collection service but may need Biffa OneCall for when an emergency waste situation occurs that needs to be dealt with immediately to ensure site safety or just the smooth running of their day-to-day business.

“We’ve already seen a huge amount of demand for this service, particularly from Britain’s small to medium sized businesses. Because of our existing scale and broad range of expertise across the UK, we’ve been able to mobilise this new service quickly and help busy companies win back time previously wasted with unplanned waste situations.”

For more information call 0800 55 11 22 or visit




Notes to editors

Biffa Group Limited is a leading waste management company in the UK, headquartered in High Wycombe, United Kingdom. It provides collection, landfill, recycling and special waste services to local authorities and industrial and commercial clients in the UK.