The number of deliberate fires in Aberdeenshire has increased in the last year compared to the three-year average.
A new report to members of Aberdeenshire Council’s communities committee reveals there were around 44 deliberate fires between April and September, up from 32 in 2018 and above the three-year average of around 29.
These are fires which involve occupied buildings, vehicles and outdoor structures.
There were 101 deliberate secondary fires, which involve grass, bushes and refuse, which is up from the three-year average of around 90 but down from 123 in 2018.
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The report said: “In Aberdeenshire, evidence reflects that deliberate fires can be closely linked with antisocial behaviour.
“Youth engagement has been identified as an opportunity for the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service to become more pro-active in and work is in progress to further develop youth engagement activities such as the fire-setters intervention programme.”
The report will be considered on Thursday.