Arsonists endangering lives, say police, after nine fires in Daventry town centre in a month

All of the fires took place in January and were deliberate
All of the fires took place in January and were deliberate

Police and fire officers are appealing for anyone with information about a recent spate of suspected arsons in the Daventry town centre area to come forward.

In January, nine fires, believed to be deliberate, were recorded in the area, prompting concerns about how arsonists could put lives at risk.

Police Sergeant Chris Thomas, of Daventry sector, expressed concerns that, if these arsons continue, one could end up proving fatal, so support from the local community is urgently needed.

He said: “The recent fires have included blazes which have been in populated areas, close to homes and businesses in the Daventry town centre area.

“Through Daventry’s Community Safety Partnership and Operation Unite, we have been working closely with people in the area to encourage them to report fly-tipping and to take other preventative steps to protect their properties, but we have very real concerns that one of these fires could result in serious harm being caused to people as well as property.

“We would urge people to please come forward if you have information about the offenders behind any of these recent fires or if you have witnessed suspicious behaviour you believe could be connected to a deliberate fire.

“It may be there are local people who know who is responsible for any of the recent incidents but are not speaking out.

"We would like to remind them that every deliberate fire could cause harm to people as well as to property.

"Arson is a serious and potentially life-threatening offence. We would ask people to ensure they are coming forward to help police with enquiries, by ringing us direct or reporting anonymously via Crimestoppers.”

The fires have included rubbish containers such as a skip and wheelie bins, as well as cars and outdoor storage areas.

Another Day of Action has already been planned by Daventry’s Community Safety Partnership, which includes police, fire, Daventry District Council and other partners, to take place on Tuesday, February 19.

During this day, which will run in Daventry town centre from 10am until 1pm, police, firefighters and Northamptonshire Emergency Services Cadets will be carrying out surveys with businesses on the subject of anti-social behaviour and arson in the area.

The day is being held as part of the ongoing Operation Unite, which is working to cut arson and anti-social behaviour in Daventry.

Daventry firefighters and the Arson Task Force would like to remind people there are steps that can be taken to help prevent arson and minimise the damage of potential deliberate fires.

Anyone with any information about these fires should contact Northamptonshire Police on 101 or make an anonymous report to Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

Arson prevention advice:

Avoid placing bins, rubbish, or other combustible items against the walls of your home. These are a ready supply of fuel for an arsonist.

If rubbish can only be stored alongside your building, then please avoid putting it directly against the wall of your home, to minimise the chance of fire spreading.

Do not allow rubbish to accumulate in areas outside your home. Piles of discarded waste can be targets for deliberate fire setters.

Ensure you only place rubbish out for collection on the correct day.

Maintain good security in and around your home. Remember to close and lock any gates. Lock doors and windows when you go out. Make sure fencing is in a good state of repair.

Consider installing security lighting at your home to deter intruders.

Sheds and garages should be locked. Do not leave flammable liquids in the open.

If you see fly-tipped waste, then police request you report this immediately. Fly-tipped rubbish in the Daventry area can be reported by visiting www.daventrydc.gov.uk/online or by calling Daventry District Council on 01327 871100.