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Police believe two Masterton toilet fires are linked

George Shiers


Police believe there could be links between two fires that were lit inside a Masterton toilet block earlier this week.

The first fire took place at 11am on Monday, with fire officers from Masterton police station responding to a report of smoke coming out of a toilet block next to the Kid’s Own Playground in Memorial Park.

Wairarapa Police Response Manager Senior Sergeant Jennifer Hansen said the fire appeared to be deliberately lit and said they were appealing for information.

“Fortunately there was minimal damage however it is disappointing that once again this community resource has been the target of a deliberate act.”

“We are appealing for any witnesses or anyone with any information to contact police.”

A second fire took place in the same toilets on Tuesday afternoon, this time lit in a bin inside the building.

“This was pretty much a repeat,” Masterton Station Officer Doug Flowerday said.

“There was no real damage done to the toilet block but there certainly could have been.”

Both Memorial Park toilet fires were referred to the police and were under investigation. Hansen said the incidents appeared to be connected.

“Both fires remain under investigation however we have a line of enquiry which suggests the two incidents are related,” she said.

The Memorial Park fires were not the only toilet fires Masterton Fire Station responded to this week. A third unrelated fire involved a rubbish pile catching alight next to a semi-permanent toilet structure at a Masterton building site on Sunday evening.

Fire staff responded to the scene shortly after 8pm. Officer Kevin Smith said the fire appeared to be caused by an oil tin.

“There was a man staining the walls with an oil-based stain.

“He had put the rag in an empty tin and it was a spontaneous reaction, a bit like a rag in linseed oil.

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