Fire crews blast anti-social behaviour amid spate of small fires

Firefighters are becoming frustrated at the increasing volume of low-level incidents they are having to tackle.

Friday, 16th April 2021, 9:13 am
Updated Friday, 16th April 2021, 9:18 am
Fire crews are receiving multiple calls to fires lit deliberately in parts of Leigh

Crews at Leigh fire station say they are receiving multiple calls a night to incidents at Firs Park and around Twist Lane and Plank Lane.

Large groups of youths are repeatedly setting fire to bins, pallets, wood, tyres and rubbish.

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The fire service says it is working with Greater Manchester Police (GMP) to tackle anti-social behaviour as part of Operation Bluefin.

Watch manager Rob Grundy at Leigh fire station said: "We are dealing with a very high volume of low-level fires in these areas.

"This is now happening on a nightly basis. On Thursday night the number of calls was probably in double figures.

"At one point Atherton crews were in our area and both Leigh appliances were dealing with these incidents.

"This is really tying up resources here in Leigh.

"We've also had a couple of upset members of the public saying they can't use the park as they don't feel safe with fires being lit and large numbers of youths around.

"We are aware of the impact this is having on local communities and we are doing everything we can to reduce these types of incidents."

A fire station manager recently went down to Firs Park to inspect it and see if there were ways of reducing the number of fires there.

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