Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS) and Northamptonshire Police are urging people to be vigilant and report suspicious activity to help curb the spate of deliberate fires after a spike in the number of incidents in Northamptonshire over the last few days.
Deliberate fires are dangerous at the best of times, but the county’s Fire Service is warning that in the current conditions, and when firefighters are stretched to the limit, it is “potentially putting lives at risk”.
NFRS attended 18 deliberate fires over the weekend (August 5-7) and that total has now increased to 51. This anti-social behaviour is reckless, potentially life threatening and is causing widespread damage to land across the county.
In this extremely dry, hot weather, what may start as a small fire could rapidly spread causing acres of damage and the potential to affect homes and people’s lives.
Andy Evans, Arson Reduction Officer for Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service, said: “We are seeing multiple fires being set across the county and we are spending hours attending these reckless incidents. Many of the fires we have already attended have been lit in open spaces, but there is a real risk that these could spread to urban areas and this could have horrific consequences.
“Eight fire engines were required at one single incident yesterday which meant we had to move appliances and resources around the county to keep other people safe. Resources are being stretched unnecessarily and these deliberate fires are potentially putting lives at risk.
“We are working with police colleagues to prevent deliberate fires being lit and to identify those people responsible. Arson is a crime, and the penalties can be severe for those involved.”
If an incident requires an emergency response, please call 999.
FireStoppers provides an anonymous way to report anything you know about deliberate firesetting. It’s managed by the independent charity CrimeStoppers. Reports of arson passed to FireStoppers will be investigated.
Call 0800 169 5558 or complete the online form at www.firestoppersreport.co.uk if you have any information about deliberate fire setting.