BENDIGO’S fire lookout tower at One Tree Hill was targeted by burglars at the weekend with radio equipment and binoculars stolen.
Police said the recently-upgraded top floor of the tower was broken into between 6.30pm Saturday and 9.30am Sunday.
The Department of Sustainability and Environment, which uses the tower to spot fires, was forced to bring in replacement equipment.
A DSE spokesperson said the theft didn’t affect the operation of the tower.
Senior Constable Josh Olver from Bendigo Police said the act could have put public safety at risk.
“It’s a despicable offence and I’m baffled how someone could offend in this manner,” he said.
“Fortunately the DSE has been able to put secondary measures in place to have the tower back up and running.
“But the consequences of having those items stolen could have been dire for the community in a worst case scenario.”
Police examined the scene and checked for fingerprints.
Senior Constable Olver said a padlock and chain had been removed but there were no signs of forced entry.
“The scene has been examined by our crime scene services, the results of which will be analysed over coming days,” he said.
“Anyone with information is strongly urged to contact myself or Crime Stoppers.”
Anybody with information can call Bendigo Police on 5448 1300 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.