Crime Stoppers Victoria is urging Knox City and Yarra Ranges residents to help eliminate bushfire arson this summer.
Crime Stoppers is today launching its bushfire arson awareness campaign in Lilydale, reminding residents of the tragic consequences of bushfire arson and encouraging locals to report unsafe behaviour.
The campaign is being launched today at Lilydale Lake with representatives from CFA, Victoria Police, Parks Victoria and DEWLP in attendance.
Knox City and Yarra Ranges residents are no strangers to the effects of bushfires with the devastating impact of the Black Saturday bushfires of 2009 and numerous cases of arson growing over the past few years.
With this year’s above-average fire risk in Victoria, an arson attack could be devastating to the region.
Whilst most residents would not consider themselves arsonists, the Crime Stoppers campaign reminds residents to be mindful that sometimes normal-seeming activities could result in bushfire arson.
“Both recklessly and deliberately lit fires are considered arson by law” said Crime Stoppers Victoria Community Manager Chris Plumridge.
“Whether it’s a campfire on a total fire ban day, or whether you’re grinding or welding and there’s a spark- reckless bushfire arson can still result in the same tragic consequences as deliberate arson.”
Superintendent Graeme Arthur echoed the call for residents to report what they know.
“Recklessly and deliberately lit fires affect the entire community, so it’s up to all of us to keep the community safe.” he said.
“As Police we can’t be everywhere, so that’s why we need the community’s support in reporting what they know, so that we can stop bushfire arson before it happens.”
The confidential Crime Stoppers reporting service is not staffed by police, is not equipped with caller ID, and not able to trace people through the website. Instead, call takers look to remove personal details from reports before they are passed on to police.
“We know that in rural and regional areas you may well be reporting someone known to you” said Mr. Plumridge.
“A report to Crime Stoppers is completely confidential, so you can report and help keep your community safe without fear of anyone finding out. Not even the police know who you are.”
If you know something about reckless or deliberate bushfire arson in your community, you can make a confidential report to Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000, or at the Crime Stoppers Victoria website at www.crimestoppersvic.com.au. If it’s an emergency situation or you see smoke or flames, call Triple Zero (000) immediately.
Crime Stoppers is a not-for-profit community organisation, helping to keep families and communities safe. We work closely with police to provide valuable information from the public to help solve crime. Any information you provide is anonymous– so if you see something or you know something, say something.Donate to crime stoppers