More than 60 intentional fires trigger wildfire alerts in Sussex

MORE than 60 deliberate fires have prompted alerts from firefighters and police.

Firefighters have taken part in several deliberate fires across the county in recent weeks and West Sussex County Council said they could have had “devastating results”.

A spokeswoman said the county had a “very high risk” of wildfires.

Over the past month, West Sussex Fire and Rescue Services have attended to more than 60 fires that were intentionally started. They were said to be “a major risk in connection with the extremely dry conditions”.

Firefighters from Bognor and Haywards Heath were treating two deliberate fires in one night on Wednesday.

The Argus: Fire in Ashenground Road, Haywards HeathFire in Ashenground Road, Haywards Heath

At 21.55 fire crews were dispatched from Haywards Heath to Ashenground Road after receiving reports of blazing in an area of ​​woodland.

Firefighters fought the fire for an hour and a half before bringing it under control.

Less than ten minutes later, the fire service received a call at Longbrook Park in Bognor and two fire engines were dispatched to the scene.

The fire brigade found a burning playground. It was eventually destroyed by fire.

Both incidents are believed to have been started intentionally and Sussex Police have been informed.

West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service tactical adviser Matt Gamblen said: “Although temperatures have fallen since the heatwave, the ground is still extremely dry and we strongly advise against making fires outside.

“It doesn’t take much for these fires to spread to nearby undergrowth, or worse, buildings and properties.

“The Met Office’s Fire Severity Index shows West Sussex will face a ‘very high’ risk of serious fires this weekend. This means that should a fire break out, it will likely spread very quickly.

“Deliberately starting a fire is incredibly irresponsible and wastes both your time and ours. More importantly, it could prevent us from rushing to an emergency where we are most needed, perhaps with the participation of your loved ones.”

A spokesman for Eastbourne Police said: “Your help is needed to fight arson.”

“During the month of July we noticed an increase in premeditated arson (arson), with individuals intentionally attacking public playgrounds. More than 60 intentional fires trigger wildfire alerts in Sussex

Fry Electronics Team

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