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Spate of arson attacks

Investigations have begun to catch the arsonists behind a series of fires in the Bognor Regis area.


Six arson attacks were reported across the town last weekend. The series of blazes has prompted West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service to work with Arun District Council’s anti-social behaviour team to find those responsible.


They have warned small fires can quickly escalate to a potentially life-threatening blaze. Tackling them can also divert vital resources away from other serious incidents.


The fires have been set in various locations. They have included parks, residential areas and close to commercial premises.


Chris Bowles, the fire station manager for Bognor Regis, East Wittering and Selsey, said: “The number of suspected deliberate fires we have dealt with in the town is concerning, and I would urge those responsible to think twice about their actions.


“Fires started deliberately can be particularly dangerous because they generally develop much faster. A fire that is started in a bin can spread to nearby properties or vehicles.


“What have may started as a small fire, very quickly puts people’s lives, homes and businesses at risk.”


Last Friday night saw crews from Bognor Regis Fire Station called to deal with the following fires:


*5.46pm – fire in the open involving tyres, Harbour Road, Pagham
*7.36pm – reports of multiple fires in woodland off Harbour Road, Pagham
*7.50pm – an area of about 5sq m of cut grass was set on fire in a field near Whitfield Close
*9.04pm – bin on fire in Marine Drive West


Further incidents occurred last weekend. Residents who live near the Hook Lane playground in Pagham chased off a group of young people who had set the climbing frame on fire.


Last Saturday saw the town’s firefighters called at 3.42pm to a fire in a field off Mayfields Close, which is believed to have been caused by young people who were playing with fire.


The fire and rescue service works with the police to prosecute those who start fires deliberately.

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