£1.5m on tack­ling ar­son

Bangor Mail - - NEWS -

AL­MOST £1.5m of tax­pay­ers’ money has gone up in smoke due to fire­fight­ers hav­ing to bat­tle ar­son at­tacks.

Fight­ing de­lib­er­ate fires has cost North Wales Fire and Res­cue Ser­vice £1,478,796.41 since Jan­uary 2014, with crews hav­ing at­tended 2,105 such in­ci­dents.

The num­ber is likely to be much higher, as fig­ures re­vealed fol­low­ing a Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion Re­quest by the Mail’s sis­ter pa­per the Daily Post were not avail­able af­ter March 21 this year due to a change of sys­tem at the fire ser­vice.

Wrex­ham was by far the most pro­lific area for de­lib­er­ate fires, with 835 blazes cost­ing the fire ser­vice £428,492.93.

The county recorded al­most dou­ble the amount of the sec­ond worst area, Flintshire, with 434 fires cost­ing £283,091.01.

Tim Owen, ar­son re­duc­tion man­ager for North Wales Fire and Res­cue Ser­vice, slammed those who set fires de­lib­er­ately.

He said: “De­lib­er­ate fire set­ting is com­pletely un­ac­cept­able, as well as the as­so­ci­ated mone­tary cost.

“These fires put ex­tra pres­sure on our re­sources and can put the lives of the fire crews and the pub­lic at risk”

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