Crew pelted as park blaze doused

Fire crew attacked on Astley Street park, dint visible next to window
Fire crew attacked on Astley Street park, dint visible next to window

WIGAN’S fire chief has issued a plea for parents to keep track of what their children get up to in the evening after an emergency crew was targeted by youths.

Teenagers on Astley Street Park launched a rock at a fire engine, narrowly missing a window, on Monday night.

The crew had been called just after 8.30pm because the youths had set a fire on the park.

The area has been a hot-spot for anti-social behaviour in recent months and authorities have imposed a dispersal order zone.

Fire manager Steve Sheridan said: “The action of throwing missiles at emergency crews is a criminal act and we take it very seriously.

“We are now working alongside Greater Manchester Police on this issue, it is something that no-one would condone.

“If youngsters are coming home smelling of smoke, please question them. Equally, if parents know of anyone taking part in this sort of behaviour please let the authorities know.

“To target a crew like this is mindless and idiotic, we will chase as serious a sanction against these offenders as we can.”

Fire officers attempted to detain the offenders but the trio ran off as police arrived.

Crew manager Ian Murray, told the Evening Post: “This engine was effectively out of action while we dealt with this.

“The stone was thrown after we had put out the fire, we were driving off from the park when it smashed into the side of us, narrowly missing the back window (pictured).”

The dispersal order allows police officers to move on groups of two or more in the evenings.

It is in place around the park and areas of Tyldesley town centre for the next six months.

Fire manager Sheridan added: “Attacks on our crews like this could put the safety of the public at risk, including the parents and siblings of the offenders.

“If an engine is put out of action, it means there’s no cover for that certain area if there is another emergency.”