'Chain them together' fire service warning after 50 wheelie bin fires in a month in West Denton

Image of wheelie bin fire being put out
Credit: Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service

Residents are being urged to keep their wheelie bins secure following a recent spate of deliberate fires across the region, including 50 in West Denton in the past month.

The warning has come from the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service following over 130 bin fires since the start of the year.

Overall, the incidents have cost the taxpayer more than £3,300.

Now it has been suggested residents should take steps to protect their bins from arson, "perhaps by chaining them together". However, the service are telling people not to chain the bins to their houses as this "could put your home at risk if the bins are set alight".

Wheelie bin fire aftermath. Fire service say they are often started by youths Credit: Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service

The fire service warns a lot of the fires have been started by young people.

Ian Stewart, station manager at Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, said: “Many of these bin fires are linked to youth anti-social behaviour and we are concerned that some young people are putting themselves at risk.

“They may consider this to be harmless fun but it leaves the taxpayer out of pocket, residents with no bin and young people are putting themselves at risk.

“We are proactively looking to engage with young people and signpost them towards some of the great activities available in the community", Mr Stewart added, and called on parents to educate their children on the dangers of starting such fires.

Wheelie bin melted into the floor after a fire Credit: Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service

Sergeant Euan Faulke of Northumbria Police said: “We won’t tolerate antisocial behaviour as we know it can have a harmful impact on our communities.

“As a Force we will continue to support our partners in preventing and tackling these types of incidents through effective teamwork and information sharing.

“We would ask the public continues to support us by getting in touch whenever they see a crime being committed or have information about any type of suspicious activity".