Fire brigade bosses are calling for everyone to play their part to help clampdown on arson after a number of incidents over the past week.

Despite the current government guidance on staying at home to help alleviate the coronavirus pandemic, Cleveland Fire Brigade is still attending an increasing number of deliberate fires.

This includes three deliberate fires at Summerhill Country Park in Hartlepool last weekend.

The fires damaged areas of natural habitat and some fencing on the site, and prompted concerns over the presence of young people from the Hartlepool Community Safety Team.

Cleveland Fire Brigade chiefs stressed they have a zero tolerance policy towards arson and called on everyone to do their bit to tackle the issue.

Steve Johnson, area manager prevention, said: “It is frustrating that at a time when we all need to be coming together to support one another we still have people committing crimes and ruining our local communities.

“We need the public’s support, now more than ever.

“Our resources need to be available to respond to incidents and support with humanitarian aid for vulnerable people in our communities.

“Arson is everyone’s problem, we need to tackle it together.

“We have a zero-tolerance on arsonists and will work with the police to investigate and bring prosecutions where necessary.”

Fire brigade bosses have said everyone can help in several ways, including staying at home as per government guidance.

They also advise people to eliminate fuel sources such as piles of rubbish, and called for parents to know where their children are and what they are doing.

They also noted anyone can report incidents anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

The calls are in line with Cleveland Fire Brigade’s recently launched campaign looking to tackle arson in the area.

It came as in Cleveland 85 per cent of fire brigade calls are for deliberate fires and brigade bosses estimated arson cost the area £17.9m in 2018/19.

The economic cost to Hartlepool was £2.9m during this period.

The rate of deliberate fires per 10,000 of the population in Cleveland is 65 incidents, more than four times the national average of 15.

The most prevalent fires in relation to arson in Cleveland include refuse, grassland and vehicle fires.