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Arson roadshow visits Warrandyte
Members from Warrandyte brigade rushed off to an incident in Templestowe this morning with CFA Chief Officer Euan Ferguson jumping on board to turn out as emergency services representatives gathered for the Crimestoppers arson roadshow event in Warrandyte.
Crimestoppers in conjunction with CFA have been touring the state over the last few weeks to promote the Crimestoppers Bushfire Arson Campaign which is designed to educate the Victorian community about arson and its devastating effects.
The main message of the 2015 campaign is “If you see something, say something.”
Crimestoppers CEO Samantha Hunt revealed some disturbing statistics as today with three deliberately lit fires in Warrandyte since the start if this fire season.
Minister for Emergency Services Jane Garrett revealed some even more alarming statistics with three deliberately or recklessly lit fires occurring in Victoria every day since the start of the fire season.
“These are extremely disturbing statistics,” Minister Garrett said, reinforcing the Crimestoppers' message if you see something say something.
“We need the community to help us – so if you see something, say something.”
Emergency Services Commissioner Craig Lapsley warned Victorians not to become complacent about fire danger despite a mild January.
“Recklessly-lit fires include fires started by angle grinders, mowing and slashing and cigarette butts.
“February is always a hot month and the peak month for fire danger as we’ve seen in past years.
“We have two to three weeks of serious fire danger coming up – it will only take two to three days of hot, windy conditions for us to be back where we were at the start of January.”
Mr Lapsley highlighted Central Victoria amongst the areas of highest concern, with grassland almost completely cured.
Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Shane Patton from Victoria Police said so far this year eight people have been charged with arson.
“The penalties for deliberately causing a bushfire include up to 15 year’s imprisonment.
“Unfortunately, people behaving recklessly on high fire danger days is all too common.”