Drive to halt fireraising around Dundee

Crews at one of the fires at Whitfield Shopping Centre.

Fire chiefs have revealed how they’re holding regular meetings with other authorities in a bid to crack down on deliberate fires being set in the north-east of the city.

Last week, firefighters were called to attend a series of fireraising incidents in the Whitfield area.

At the time, Craig Thomson — station manager at Kingsway East — told how he feared one of the incidents would lead to someone being hurt or worse if they carried on.

Speaking to the Tele after the spate, Martin Tait — the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service’s group manager for Dundee — said that efforts were going on behind the scenes in an attempt to bring a halt to the problems his crews are facing.

He said: “It would be fair to say there are number of issues currently going on in that area.

“We are holding regular meetings at our Community Safety Hub in Lochee.

“We are liaising with the police, community safety wardens and the anti-social behaviour team to try to address the issues in that area.

“I do know that the Kingsway East Station is holding an engagement event at Whitfield Green on April 13 in conjunction with local partners — with events such as football and other activities.

“We are currently offering a number of incentives to try to divert youths from committing these offences.”

Mr Thomson said last week: “Above all is the fear that one day, someone might be in one of these places when a fire is set.

“That would be the worst possible scenario and one we never hope to see.”

A probe was launched last Tuesday night when three buildings were discovered to be on fire within hours of each other.

One blaze started in the old Post Office building, but then spread to the derelict Whitfield Shopping Centre.

Hours after that fire was put out, a fire then broke out in the former Wood Group building in Piper Street at Baldovie Industrial Estate.

The fire at the Post Office and shopping centre is being treated as deliberate. Meanwhile, crews were again called into action on Thursday when a series of deliberate fires were set. Firefighters attended Tarzan’s Island in Whitfield at about 4pm.

They then had to attend the former shopping centre again at 5.50pm and 6pm. Police issued an appeal for information over the incidents, saying there had been “no trace” of anyone on arrival.

A spokeswoman added: “Officers will give the area passing attention.”

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