Arsonists strike in Gosport road twice in two nights

Firefighters were called to a second suspected arson attack on the same road in two nights.

Saturday, 12th November 2016, 8:25 am
Updated Wednesday, 16th November 2016, 4:52 pm
Picture: Craig-Ross Bethell

The latest incident, which happened at about 2am today, saw a Peugeot set alight in Blackthorn Drive, Gosport.

Fire crews from Gosport went to the scene and used a hose reel and two breathing apparatus as they battled the blaze in an attempt to protect a nearby building that was at risk if the fire spread.

A spokesman for Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service said: ‘The flames were quite well established by the time we arrived.

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‘The incident is being treated as suspicious and police were also in attendance.’

This latest fire follows a similar suspected arson attack that took place in the same road at 3.45am yesterday, which saw a van suffer damage.

Local resident Craig-Ross Bethell saw the firefighters battling the fire and the damage afterwards.

He said: ‘It is disgusting that people are out at this time and feel the best way to pass the time is to destroy someone’s property and in the case of the van, their livelihood.’

Picture: Craig Bethell Aftermath of arson attack in Blackthorn Drove Gosport November 11, 2016 Submitted via Facebook PPP-161111-225455001

Fire crews also attended a third separate car fire on the same night.

They also went to a blaze at flats in the former White Swan pub in Forton Road at 2.55am, where it is believed somebody set fire to rubbish in a communal area, leading to 11 people fleeing their homes, some via the upstairs windows.

The damage to the flats has meant that several residents have been told they cannot return this weekend, including Philip Dix.

Leader of Gosport Borough Council Mark Hook has condemned the attacks and urged people to be vigilant in a bid to stop them.

Picture: Craig Bethell Aftermath of arson attack in Blackthorn Drove Gosport November 11, 2016 Submitted via Facebook PPP-161111-225455001

A spokesman from Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service backed his calls.

He said: ‘People need to be vigilant and report anything suspicious.’

The incidents come after arsonists went on a spree of destruction and torched four cars – including a police vehicle – in Foster Road and Linden Grove last month.