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Heat turned up on bushfire arsonists this summer

Posted on 03/11/2020


As South Australia begins yet another Fire Danger Season it is important to be extra vigilant and on the lookout for firebugs.

Last summer, Crime Stoppers SA received 24 contacts from people with information about suspected bushfire arsonists, which led to 20 investigations.

Four of those investigations are ongoing, with police also keeping a close eye on known and suspected arsonists throughout the warmer months.

Arsonists are known to often ignite small fires, practicing their methods before escalating to larger and potentially more devastating bushfires.

What may appear to be an insignificant fire may demonstrate an arsonist’s pattern of crime. If this behaviour is left undetected, the arsonist may continue lighting fires, which could lead to devastating results.

It is important to pay attention to what is going on around you during the Fire Danger Season. Every time you’re out for a hike, run, drive or picnic, you are encouraged to keep watch for suspicious arson activity.

What to look out for:

  • People acting unusually, or wearing unusual clothing — they just don’t seem to fit. For example, not dressed for a trail walk, looking nervous when you pass.
  • If something or someone makes you stop and wonder what’s going on. Try and remember their age, sex, weight, height, hair colour or clothing.
  • A vehicle or driver looks out of place; take note of registration number, make, model, colour and any distinguishing features (such as dents, stickers).
  • Some arsonists practice with small fires before igniting a larger one, so if you see signs of burnt out spot fires or anything suspicious then it is important to report it.

It is also important for people to know which number to call and why. If you see something that seems suspicious that is happening then call Police on 131 444, if you see a fire burning call 000 for fire services, and if you have any information – no matter how seemingly insignificant – about someone who may be deliberately lighting fires then contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or report online at

You don’t have to say who you are or get involved.



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