Monday 23 November 2015
Crime Stoppers Victoria is asking local residents to keep their eyes and ears open this summer to help stamp out deliberately and recklessly lit fires in Bendigo and surrounds. Bushfire prevention is the responsibility of all Victorians.
Reckless fire and arson are attributed as being the cause of more than 50 percent of all bushfires across the country, with 1444 suspicious fires and almost 400 people charged for arson-related offences in Victoria during the 2013-2014 bushfire season.
Deliberately and recklessly lit fires can threaten lives and property, and tie up valuable emergency service resources, leaving other areas of the state vulnerable, particularly on extreme and code red fire days.
“Victoria is one of the highest bushfire risk areas in the world, and fire activity affects us all,” Crime Stoppers Victoria Community Manager, Peter Brown said.
“The summer outlook is for significantly increased fire activity in Victoria, with the state having already experienced some serious bushfires.
“A large number of bushfires in Victoria could be prevented if people did not engage in arson or reckless conduct, such as lighting a fire on a total fire ban day, using machinery in a reckless manner or not properly extinguishing a campfire.
“Preventing bushfires is everyone’s responsibility, and reckless fires cost lives. We are asking local residents to remain vigilant over the coming months to help reduce the threats in their community.
“Crime Stoppers Victoria is proud to stand with the Victorian Government, Emergency Management Victoria, Victoria Police, the CFA, Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), Parks Victoria and emergency service agencies to combat people engaged in reckless activities that may result in fires and help keep our community safe from unnecessary fire risks.” Mr Brown said.
If you think you have information about someone in your community who is deliberately lighting fires or engaging in reckless fire behavior call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 for a confidential conversation, report securely online at www.crimestoppersvic.com.au. In an emergency call 000.
The Crime Stoppers Bushfire Arson campaign was developed in response to the Black Saturday fires in 2009, and seeks to support people in the community to confidentially report suspicious bushfire arson and reckless fire activity information. Since its inception, the annual campaign has seen an increase of nearly 300 percent in community reports providing bushfire arson and reckless fires information.
Crime Stoppers Victoria is a not-for-profit community organisation, helping to keep families and communities safe. We work closely with Victoria Police to provide valuable information from the public to help solve crime. Any information you provide is confidential – so if you see something or you know something, say something.Donate to crime stoppers