Devon’s household waste recycling centres will start admitting vans from today (Wednesday, June 24) - but there are limits on the amount of waste that can be brought in.

To shorten unloading times and serve as many people as possible, vans must bring only the same amount of waste that would fit in a normal-sized family car or trailer.

Standard vans such as a Ford Transits, VW Transporters and Vauxhall Vivaros should be no more than a third full., and very large vans such as Mercedes Sprinters should be no more than a quarter full.

Vans going to sites with more than this amount of waste will be turned away.

Vans will also need to be less than 6m long and less than 3.5 tonnes gross weight. Box vans, Luton vans, horsebox vans and vans towing trailers are not permitted, as standard.

The sites can be used only by people delivering their own household waste. Waste from business and trade is not permitted, and this includes landlords with waste from properties or holiday lets, and house clearance and waste removal businesses.

Health protection measures will continue to be in force, including social distancing guidelines.

Staff will not be able to assist with unloading waste and all payments on site must be by credit/debit card only.

With the reduced capacity and people having to unload all their waste themselves, visits are taking longer, and delays are likely. If queues become too long and cause a risk to other road users, people will be asked to return later.

Residents displaying coronavirus symptoms are asked not to visit the recycling centres.

Cllr Andrea Davis said: “We really appreciate everyone’s patience as we work to gradually reopen our household waste recycling centres safely.

“All our sites continue to be very busy, and social distancing means the number of vehicles safely allowed inside is reduced, so queues form quickly.

“We are adopting a ‘fair use’ system asking household van owners to fill their vans only to levels equivalent to a normal sized family car or trailer, and to book slots at our busiest sites.”