The Kaitaia Fire Brigade was back at the old Kaitaia Bowling Club pavilion in Matthews' Ave on Thursday evening, for the third time since an electrical fault a sparked a fire on the upper floor in October.
All three subsequent fires have been deemed as suspicious, police saying yesterday that they had some idea of who was responsible, but were not yet in a position to take action.
The Police Youth Aid section was continuing inquiries.
The first of the suspicious fires, on March 7, resulted in further major damage to the upper storey. The second was lit on the ground floor, doing minor damage, while last week's, which was also extinguished by firefighters before it got away, was set in cushions on the ground floor.
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Fire risk management officer Gary Beer said fire authorities were now working with the Far North District Council and the owners of the building, believed to be a couple living in America, with the aim of having it demolished on the grounds of public safety.
Meanwhile police are also investigating a spate of other suspicious fires in Kaitaia, including at least two in the Parkdale reserve, off Allen Bell Drive. The latest incident occurred on Tuesday evening last week, in the same area where a bamboo thicket growing over a wooden fence was set alight the previous Sunday afternoon. In that case residents saw children trying to light a fire and called 111 immediately.
The same Sunday morning (March 21) saw an attempt to light a fire in a concrete block amenities/storage building on the Kaitaia A&P showgrounds. Firefighters detected a strong smell of petrol when they arrived, but damage was minimal. The only action required of the brigade was to ventilate the building.