Safety officers issue field fire warning
Police and fire fighters are calling on parents and guardians to warn children not to play with fire in fields and woodland areas.
It follows a number of field fires, many of which were started deliberately.
Yesterday, Sunday 10 August, fire officers and police were called to Brookmans Park’s Leach Fields after a fire spread out of control across the local grassland.
It was the third such fire to be started deliberately at the the old oak tree in the middle of the Leach Fields in as many weeks.
Divisional Officer Simon Brown of Hertfordshire Community Fire Safety Unit said the fires severely drain resources and hamper the force’s ability to deal with other calls.
“Lives are, quite literally, being put at risk by the stupidity of youngsters who set light to fields,” he said.
Police have warned that they are concerned that flames could quite easily spread to nearby properties and threaten lives.
Sunday’s fire in Leach Field had spread well beyond the original blaze and officers had to use portable units to contain its spread.
Officers from both the police and fire service say youngsters are putting their own lives at risk playing with fire and have urged parents and guardians to hand out warnings.
They say that setting fire to fields is a criminal offence and officers will deal robustly with anyone caught.
The Fire and Rescue Service attended more than 30 field, grass and hedgerow fires in the first five days of August alone.
Anyone with any information to help trace those responsible is asked to contact the local police community team on 01707-638112.
11 August 2003
Bonfire threat to local nature area - 24 July 2003