A fire safety warning is being issued for the Newhaven area following a spate of deliberate fires.
East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service is concerned that the growing number of incidents is putting lives in grave danger.
The most recent incident occurred overnight at the weekend (10th August) after firefighters had to tackle a gorse fire.
Crews were called out following reports of a fire at Castle Hill, Fort Road, at 11.02pm and more than 50 999 calls were received.
Around 25 firefighters and two officers attended the scene, where an area of gorse measuring approximately 200m by 100m was alight.
Three main jets were used along with firefighting foam.
The stop message was received at 02.14am. As of 07.30, crews are at the scene damping down.
Borough Commander Garry Collins said: “Recently we have had over 40 deliberate fires in the Newhaven area, over the weekends, mostly occurring at night between 9pm & 11pm. These incidents have resulted in serious damage to the environment, property and more importantly are putting local lives at Risk".
Arson is a serious crime and we need the public’s help to identify those involved. Please call Crimestoppers 0800 555 111.
East Sussex Fire and Rescue have published a list of key points to reduce the risk of wildfires:
• Dry ground in the summer means there’s an added risk of a fire starting, but you should take care at all times of the year. Follow these tips to reduce the chance of a wildfire in the countryside:
• Extinguish cigarettes properly and don’t throw cigarette ends on the ground – take your litter home.
• Never throw cigarette ends out of car windows.
• Avoid using open fires in the countryside.
• Don’t leave bottles or glass in woodland – sunlight shining through glass can start fires (take them home and recycle them).
• Only use barbecues in a suitable and safe area and never leave them unattended.
• If you see a fire in the countryside, report it to the fire and rescue service immediately.
• Don’t attempt to tackle fires that can’t be put out with a bucket of water – leave the area as quickly as possible.
• If you can, prepare for the arrival of the fire and rescue service at the pre-arranged meeting point, by unlocking gates, etc.