Arsonists behind Griffith fires: investigators

Another deliberately lit fire in Griffith this week has sparked a fresh police investigation to find the arsonists responsible. 

Wednesday's grass fire stretched for half a kilometre along Lakes View Branch canal on Abattoir Road about 6pm, just two days after a local shed was burnt out.

Three units from the Rural Fire Service (RFS) totalling 12 crew, two units from Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) and police all attended Wednesday's blaze.

RFS district officer Rob Davies said it was clear from the way the fire burned that arsonists had set the grass alight.

"Multiple ignition points, so obviously deliberately lit along the road down towards three ways," Mr Davies said.

"It was not one big fire, it was a series of smaller fires that ran along the channel bank.

"We had the whole thing rounded up within an hour."

The fire was reportedly 500 metres long and roughly five metres wide. 

Nearby resident Jeff McKenna said his son saw two people running from the area seconds before it was ablaze.

"I could see the fire from my place at about 6.15pm on Wednesday," Mr McKenna said.

"The flames must have been particularly high for me to see them from 300 yards away through my kitchen window.



"There have been fires there before but not that close to the park, sometimes we see them down around the canal but never one right at the park."

Mr McKenna was not surprised by the blaze as he had recently noticed the area was fire prone.

"You could see there was quite a bit of wild growth and you could see it would happen," he said.

"I was just talking about it a couple of weeks before, saying the grass was too long." 

Police have sent a strong warning to arsonists, saying they were taking the matter very seriously as they continued their investigations. 

Wednesday's blaze came hot on the heels of a suspicious fire that burnt down a shed on Walla Avenue.

The shed was only believed to have contained old farm equipment and tyres but it was the fifth time a fire has been lit inside it. 

This latest fire caused the most extensive damage and Fire and Rescue NSW Inspector Rick Jones suggested a form of accelerant had likely been used.


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