Regina garage fires decreased this year compared with 2021

Garage fires in Regina decreased this year compared with 2021. Responders have seen a total of 41 incidents to date for 2022. Courtesy of Regina Fire Department

Regina fire has seen a decrease in the number of garage fires this year compared with 2021.

The Regina fire deputy chief said to date, crews have responded to 41 garage fires compared with last year, when they saw a total of 56 garage fires.

“Those are not all confirmed structure fires, but that’s what we responded to, was the dispatch of a garage for last year … so a slight decrease,” said Dustin McCullough.

In the last quarter of 2022, Regina fire saw approximately 17 garage fires. But not all of those have been working structure fires on arrival.

The Regina Police Service (RPS) said there were 28 arsons reported from Nov. 1 to Dec. 20. Three of these were arsons to garages and one was an attempted arson to a garage by burning an overhead door.

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RPS said they don’t believe these are all connected but experience tells them that if someone starts a fire and gets away with it, they may repeat the behaviour.

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“We obviously do our best to solve these cases, but the investigations can be difficult. Often, there is no evidence left at the scene and no witnesses,” the RPS stated in an email response.

“Sometimes, the culprit is under the age of 12, which means they cannot be charged … so, it’s possible some are the work of the same suspects.”

McCullough said some of them have been limited to garbage fires or debris fires outside of the structure and not involved the building itself.

“We will see many different situations on arrival, but we are seeing a trend toward garage fires being first ignited on the outside of the property,” said McCullough. “Whether that would be roll-out, been stored next to the structure or debris or construction material or even mattresses and furniture being left right up against a garage or shed.”

Regina fire encourages residents to protect their property. They recommend people keep their roll-up bins secured inside of their property behind a gate or fence away from structures.

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“We’d also recommend keeping debris, construction, material, furniture, mattresses, things like that away from the building and move to the city landfill as necessary,” he said.

“We do recommend that owners do secure their property, whether that’s proper lighting, security systems … keeping the debris away from the property and generally securing if they have a vacant, gradual shed, making sure it’s secured so it’s not easily accessible.”

The RPS adds to always report suspicious behaviour and, if possible, to maintain a surveillance system and to place signage where people can see it.

“It might deter them from committing an arson or other property crime,” the RPS stated.

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