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By Connie Osborne Friday 23 November 2012 Updated: 23/11 10:42
FRESH concerns lives are at risk have been raised after the latest in a series of bin fires in Redditch.
Emergency services were called to a home in Winforton Close in Winyates between 7pm and 7.50pm on Tuesday (November 20) after a wheeled bin was set alight next to the front door.
Neighbours knocked the homeowner's door to warn her the bin was on fire and she quickly put the fire out by pouring water over it.
This follows a spate of wheeled bin and bin cupboard arsons in the Winyates area since September including two fires started outside houses on Dolben Lane which damaged gas mains and could have caused a potential explosion.
Sgt Neil Billingham, from West Mercia Police, said: "These fires are putting residents at considerable risk and if they continue it is only a matter of time before someone is seriously injured or even killed.
"It was fortunate neighbours were able to alert the homeowner and dragged the bin away from the door. If the fire had been allowed to carry on burning it could have spread to the house."
Police have now stepped up patrols and delivered letters to 400 residents in roads affected by the attacks such as Mordiford Close, Lingen Close and Fownhope Close.
"We are also asking residents to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to us, such as people hanging around their addresses after dark which is when most of these fires are happening," Sgt Billingham added.
Residents are advised to remove wheeled bins from the front of their properties and not to leave bags of rubbish next to homes, in porches or in unsecured bin cupboards.
Witnesses or anyone with information about any of the fires should contact police Station on 101, quoting incident reference 554-S-201112, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
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