Safety warning issued after spike in deliberate fires across Warwickshire

A safety warning has been issued following a spike in deliberate fires across Warwickshire.

Monday, 29th April 2019, 4:50 pm
Updated Monday, 29th April 2019, 5:03 pm
A grass fire. Photo by Warwickshire County Council.

Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service are urging people to think carefully about starting fires outside after an increase of incidents across the County during the Easter holiday period.

In just five days, the crews were called out to 30 fires including grass fires, bin fires, fires in public areas such as fields and parks and garden fires.

The Fire and Rescue Service said that a number of these fires were started deliberately.

A grass fire. Photo by Warwickshire County Council.

Moreno Francioso, Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Community Fire Prevention and Arson Manager, said: “In the last five days our crews have been called to 30 fires in the open.

"These range from grass fires, bonfires, garden fires and bin fires, which have got out of control and spread to hedges or fencing . Whilst a number of these fires have been accidental, some have been deliberately started.

“In light of this, we are calling for parents to warn their children about the dangers of starting fires and explain just how serious the consequences are; anyone starting fires deliberately could receive a fine or even a prison sentence. There is also the irreversible damage to the environment and wildlife, and the hours firefighters spend tackling these fires when they could be needed elsewhere.”

Andy Crump from Warwickshire County Council, added: “The safety of Warwickshire communities is paramount. Therefore it’s essential that residents and those visiting the county play their part to help keep our countryside, parks and woodland areas safe. If you do spot a fire, please do not attempt to deal with it, please call 999 immediately.

“Equally, if you are having a barbecue or bonfire in your garden, please ensure that it is held away from the house, trees, hedges and garden fences and do not leave it unattended. Fires can quickly get out of control and spread to neighbouring properties rapidly, as they have already done this week. So please don’t take the risk.”

If anyone has concerns around fires being started deliberately where they live they should report it to Warwickshire Police via 101.