Vow to tackle firebugs after rise in Kirkcaldy incidents

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Kirkcaldy’s fire chief has vowed to do all in his power to tackle the rise in deliberate fire setting in parts of Kirkcaldy, which has reached a five year high.

Statistics for 2016/17 for Kirkcaldy East, where the majority of fire call outs to deal with acts of willful fire raising are happening, confirm the area is now the second worst in Fife.

The town has seen a 17 per cent spike in deliberate fires for the period with crews called out to a total of 1 38 incidents in Kirkcaldy, Burntilsland and Kinghorn.

The Kirkcaldy East ward was responsible for 61 one of those call outs.

“Deliberate fire setting is generally small rubbish fires more often than not caused by younger people,” said Stephen Thomson, Kirkcaldy Fife station manager.

“Because of that we have increased our visits to schools and now speak to all primary P6 and P7 pupils and high school first and second year pupils to highlight the dangers.

“We are also working closely with community police teams to build up engagement with youngsters.

“Our busiest times are around the Easter school holidays and April through to May, as well as November for bonfire night and we’ve found that we can signifcantly reduce the number of fires if we talk to young people in the lead up to those periods.

“There is always more we can do and we plan to continue our engagement with every school in Kirkcaldy .”

Mr Thomson’s report to the town’s area committee, also highlighted Kirkcaldy Central as having the highest amount of accidental fires in Fife with 18,

There was some good news with a 12 per cent reduction in accidental fires across the Kirkcaldy area for 2016/17.