Police investigate suspicious fires

POLICE are investigating a fire at Redwood Road, Bridgewater.

The incident is just one of 14 suspicious fires police are investigating across the state.

This week, radio and print advertisements will be urging the public to report any suspicious behaviour to triple zero and Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

This campaign will compliment existing Victoria Police bushfire arson initiatives, including the annual Operation Firesetter and specially trained Bushfire Arson Liaison Officers (BAELOs) who are embedded across the state. 

Victoria Police Deputy Commissioner Tim Cartwright reiterated that bushfire arson was a serious crime and all suspicious fires would be rigorously investigated. 

“Bushfire arson has the capacity to injure, kill and destroy," he said.

"Victoria Police will be looking into all fires that are deemed suspicious and anyone found guilty of deliberately lighting a bushfire will face serious penalties, the most severe of which can be 25 years in jail,” he said. 

The fires currently under investigation are: Strezlecki Highway, Driffield; Great Ocean Road, Port Campbell; old Jindivick, Drouin West; Egans Road, Jack River; Kaarimba Road and Goulburn Valley Highway, Wunghnu; O’Hara’s Road, Yinnar; King Street and Powerscourt Street, Maffra; Redwood Road, Bridgewater; Wallara Waters Boulevard, Wallan; Hidgins Road primary school fire, Hastings; Turnbull Road, Tatura East; South Gippsland Highway, Sale; Somerton Road, Meadow Heights and Pakenham Road, Cockatoo.

Earlier this week, police cautioned two children in relation to a fire in North Bendigo, while a man was charged on Tuesday with arson, setting wildfire, intentionally engaging in conduct endangering property and recklessly engaging in conduct endangering property in relation to a fire in Merri Creek, Fawkner.

If you have any information on suspicious behaviour or a person who you feel may be linked to bushfire arson call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

If you require police immediately call triple zero. 

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