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Sale and usage of lead weights?

Discussion in 'Tackle & Tips' started by {name}, Mar 23, 2013.

  1. Pollock

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    Right this could get a little hairy so be warned lol but it is legal to use and sell lead weights between 0.06 and 28.35 grams (No.6 shot to 1oz)?
    Ref to:

    http://www.anglingtradesassociation...g note - angling lead the law (04 05 11).pdf

    this contains updates etc that openly states an weight for the purpose of weighting a fishing line. i would take this to mean bullet weights drop shot splitshot etc. I have spoken to the EA twice and they said it is illegal in freshwater though unsure on salt as it ddoesnt differentiate salt from fresh it would carry both as a rule. But trading standards will cover the sale use ettc further.

    so i contact trading standards whom have also been contacted and pushed by the ATA Angling trades association. Firstly they didnt have a clue couple of days later i get a call it has been looked into and illegal to sell or use any weight in these sizes. Does this include jigheads then i ask as it adds weights to the hook not line but causes the line to sink unlike a float. Again not sure so they go away again and come back with it doesnt say a jighead is legal only swim feeder, fly, self cocking float.
    Fine so why could i purchase these weights online or from any tackle shop in 7,14 grams and many others sizes??? surely this would be illegal for sale? Ah not sure we have been contacted already by the ATA annd told of split shot being sold and this is being investigated already.
    so does this only refer to a split shot or all weights and jig heads? I await there next call as they escalate through the ranks even higher ii am not settling untill i have an answer on this.
    on the bright side i am tinkering with a 4 component weights that matches lead in size perfectly, but completely lead free :shock: meaning i could when i please with not breaking any laws. Time consuming and a lot more expensive but cheaper than tungsten, safe and non toxic all fun and games.
    Anyone else got more onfo on this matter?:-?
     
  2. Striper

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    Mike, Gentlemen

    Mike & I have been discussing this for a while. There seems to be 2 or 3 sets of rules/laws which contradict each other. Not only do they contradict but they don't specify whether their legality is for Fresh or Saltwater.

    Just be aware that at the moment the Use of Lead as any form of weight to hold down a fishing line between 0.06gr and 28.25gr in FRESHWATER is illegal. The use of lures containing lead between these weights is not illegal. Mike is trying to find out a definitive answer to it's use in the sea. This law is governed by the Environment Agency.

    There is a separate law which governs the SALE and IMPORTATION of lead in the UK. This law is governed by Trading Standards. Again Mike is seeking clarity on this as the current view of TS is that ALL lead in any form is illegal. That in itself could have major repercussions for the tackle Industry if TS maintain their current view.
     
  3. Pollock

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    Thanks Andy, i have just contacted DEFRA on the matter and guess what the rough answer i received? "I haven't got a clue i'm afraid never been asked, strange same answer at TS when i first spoke with them. Something that has occurred to me is when worming for salmon using bouncing betty's. it is common practice to use 10-14 gram weights.
    I have been licence checked 4 times last year once at 3am when fly fishing for sea trout. Yet never rig checked when lure fishing.
    Reading through a lot of freshwater articles there is a lot of bullet weights and weedless presentation used, should the Ea bailiffs checks rigs they could have a bloody field day.
    They have repealed the law prohibiting importation of the weights in this category under European law, yet not stated or repealed the use of such?
    I have materials to make a non lead eco friendly version sorted now but costs are a lot higher than lead which would have a major knock on effect for a consumer should the TS and EA choose to ennforce current thinking. Shall keep people updated as i get more answers.
     
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  4. Striper

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    Isn't this a case where it may be best to let sleeping dogs lie?

    What are the two or three sets of rules/laws you refer to Andy? I take it Mike has posted the link to one of them already?
     
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  5. Pollock

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    In English tackle shops you should not be selling lead weights under one ounce in weight. Anything under this weight must be non toxic.
     
  6. Chub

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    Very confused here does this mean that the weights bought from shops like mr fish and art of fishing etc are ok to use never really thought about the rules here to be honest i no i have some eco worm weights which degrade quickly and are safe to use but never really thought about that aspect of kit.
     
  7. Sandeel

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    Knowing how Governement agencies love their red tape, over complicating things and bringing out blanket 'bans' on things they don't understand I have to agree with Scott on this one. Just stick with the ruling for freshwater and lead is ok in the sea as the 1987 ban was mainly introduced to protect waterfowl ingesting lead shot along with gravel for their gizzard. Anything where lead is part of the structure is fine because of this, e.g jigheads, swimfeeders, self cocking floats. The reason they don't know about a jighead is because they were pretty rare back when the law was introduced.
     
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  8. Striper

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    It only applies to weights that contain lead and slide along or attach to a fishing line to make it sink. Eco stuff, tungsten, lead-free etc are exempt. Lures are exempt although there's no definition of lure in any document.

    As for letting sleeping dogs lie, well the speed limit is 70mph but we often choose to exceed it. Knowing the law and breaking the law is personal choice. The sale of goods however is very different in my mind and you need to know and comply with the law, ignorance is no excuse. I didn't know until a few weeks ago that I could sell a jighead but not a dropshot weight made of lead. I knew I couldn't use lead in Freshwater but I had no idea about selling the stuff. That's where my interest lies.

    Do with the information what you will. I'm not telling anyone what they have to do.
     
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  9. Striper

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    Reading the act in the link put up by Mike it's not at all clear that jigheads are exempt.

    "lead weight" means split shot or any other thing suitable for weighting fishing lines and which is neither incorporated and fully enclosed in the core of a fishing line nor incorporated in the construction of a swim feeder, a self cocking float, or a fishing fly;

    Andy, what are the other rules/laws you referred to earlier?

    You can't break laws if the authorities don't even know if what you are doing is covered by them or not can you? For example if they don't know if jigheads fall under the law and you ask them they might just go away and decide they are or decide to revise the law to make it cover them.

    Also I'd argue that plenty of people sell things illegally. A choice just the same as breaking any other law. Sometimes the law is an ass though. Speed limits on motorways would be one example of this. The Poll Tax another. In such cases people are often compelled to break the law.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2013
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  10. Striper

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    Can of worms best left unopened I reckon
     
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  11. Sandeel

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    Along those lines...it's illegal to trap or net without a licence but not illegal to sell or buy them.............
     
  12. Pollock

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    Sadly ignorance or deviance of the law is no defense. The legislation clearly prohibits the sale of such forms

    After a brief conversation with the EA yesterday evening i asked again about the saltwater use of lead and no action is enforced on the sea but freshwater is enforced at present. So ok to continue as i am using lead in the sea and alternative in freshwater. This refers to weights intended to weight a fishing line. As per jigheads i asked again and agreed that it is the terminal end akin to a leadhead fly :) so i would be within my rights to argue that they are one and the same type as attached hook to weight etc.
    As per sale i received an email last night in response to updates it shall be confirmed in writing within 14 days but the sale of lead fishing weights between 0.06 - 28.34 grams are illegal in the UK. Simply put it is illegal to sell them in the Uk.
    Part of me disagrees with this and part agrees money forces the disagreement, but conservation issues and environmental factors make me agree with this matter. On the upside i will continue to make all my salt weights in lead and freshwater in lead free which i just finished the first couple of test casts with new materials :)
     
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  13. CoFounder & Retired Admin VIP Partner

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    Sleeping dog lie is a good way of dealing with it I reckon. If all the tackle shops and jighead/lure makers in the UK suddenly get clamped down on I would just like to make it clear that its all Mike Sullivan and Andy Masons fault, I have their addresses if anyone wants them :p
     
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  14. Striper

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    The fact that technically the law states use of these leads in saltwater is illegal too but yet they choose not to enforce it in that environment tells you the law is poorly written.

    As Lee states above the law was brought in to prevent birds swallowing lead shot with gravel to aid digestion that could result in lead poisoning. As also pointed out by Lee, laws are often written by bureaucrats who have a poor understanding of the area they are legislating in as this law clearly demonstrates.

    When you say that the sale of "lead weights" in the range concerned is illegal what is the definition of "lead weight"? If it is the one I've quoted above then nothing has been clarified really has it?
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2013
  15. Striper

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    Someone else opened the can of worms long before I got to it.

    It's like many things in life, if you close your eyes and ignore it, pretend it doesn't exist, stick your fingers in your ears and go LA LA LA LA, it simply disappears. Life's magic like that.
     
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  16. Pollock

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    Blame the ATA Angling trades association for this one :) Under research i did find a reference to the EU surprise suprise as i understand it lead weight refers to anything deisgned to add weight to the fishing line i.e bullet weight slpitshot, dropshot ect. I contacted defra reference use in saltwater. There is a need for the laws to be updated and ammended.
    I am not telling people what to do. thats down to each individual.
     
  17. Wrasse

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    Surely jigheads add weight to a lure so that it sinks and acts in a particular way, not purely to sink the line. Or am I thinking to simplisticly?
     
  18. Pollock

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    UPDATE
    ,
    Had a call back from Trading standards yesterday afternoon, it has been escalated through inline with other bodies they are happy with the sale of jigheads as they are an integral part of a hook akin to leadhead flies chezch nympths ect used for a long long time. But the sale of any weight i.e dropshot bullet weight, pinch / splitshot has been and will continue to be illegal. I have not enforced it in recent years though. They drew my attention to the article online from the ATA angling trades association. They are logging complaint country wide to have the sellers informed of the legal inference this started long before i looked into it before anyone gets there knickers in a twist.
    It is legal to sell weights made of alternative substances.
    It is legal at present to import lead fishing weights in these sizes for personal use but not sale in saltwater advised to the EA they dont have issue with saltwater lead use at present but bylaw inferes to freshwater.
    so there we have the legal standpoint for peoples reference now do as you please :)
     
  19. Pollock

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    Correct me if I am wrong mike, so you can buy/ship lead bullet weights into the UK for SW use but can not sell these weights in the UK ??
     
  20. Perch

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    For goodness sake, don't go stirring up hornets nests! The country is riddled with daft rules made by daft people to appease even dafter people. The blessing is that they are rarely enforced. Stirring things up only gets daft people to be told by dafter people that they need to be policing the daft rules and causes a load of grief to people who are causing no harm to anyone, especially swans!
     
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