Appeal to report deliberate firestarters following bonfire night incidentsPosted
Officers from North Wales Fire and Rescue Service and North Wales Police are appealing to members of the community to support their work and report deliberate firestarters after crews were called to nine deliberate fires in the space of six hours last night (5th November).
Seven of these occurred in the Wrexham area and one each in the Caernarfon and Garden City areas.
One of these fires involved a derelict farmhouse in Rosset, which tied up firefighters overnight and into this morning.
Officers are also condemning the anti social behaviour of a group of youths in the Wrexham area who behaved in a threatening manner towards firefighters attending some incidents - whilst attending reports of fire in the Southsea area, firefighters were subjected to abuse and threatened with fireworks.
Tim Owen, Arson Reduction Manager for North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, said:
“Unfortunately this group was a very small minority of people – the support of our communities in the work that we do is immense and I would like to thank everyone who has helped us and supported the Be a Nice Guy (BANG) campaign to drive down instances of deliberate firestarting and anti social behaviour during the bonfire and Halloween season.
“However, this type of antisocial behaviour is completely unacceptable - we will not tolerate abuse or attacks directed towards our staff members. Our firefighters are working to protect our communities and should not be subject to abuse of any nature whilst doing that.
“Deliberate incidents such as these put extra pressure on fire and rescue resources - whilst crews are busy dealing with these incidents, there could be a real need for the resources to attend a life threatening situation elsewhere in the county. Deliberate fires are a serious crime and in conjunction with North Wales Police we will pursue convictions.”
Wrexham Rural Inspector Steve Owens added; “The build up to bonfire night went well with few reports of anti-social behaviour.
“This is in part was down to the cooperation of the community and the various agencies working together.
“Unfortunately last night a small group of young people caused a disproportionate amount of demand and damage, which is unacceptable. We have the names of suspects and are linking in with agencies and the council’s housing department to identify those responsible and take appropriate action.”
Anyone with information relating to deliberate fires is asked to contact officers at North Wales Police. Alternatively call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.