Arson, Fires Down 31% in Winnipeg: Report

Jefferson Avenue Fire

Arson prevention, public education and the removal of AutoBins can be credited with Winnipeg’s near 31 percent drop in fires from 2012 to 2013.

An upcoming report from the provincial Office of the Fire Commissioner shows 1,946 fires were recorded in Winnipeg in 2013 compared to 2,818 fires in 2012.

The city says in a release that of those reported last year, 352 were attributed to arson, representing a 41 percent decease from 598 arson-related blazes in 2012.

“The city’s new recycling and garbage collection program has been a major factor in the significant drop in reported fires,” said Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service Chief John Lane. “Removing more than 5,000 AutoBins has meant fewer targets for arsonists.”

Lane added the enhanced pickups of bulk waste and abandoned garbage last summer also helped.