... | 18.05.2009 11:47 | South Coast
1:10pm Sunday 17th May 2009
Firefighters spent the weekend tackling a string of nighttime arson attacks on cars and vans across Sussex.
At least eight vehicles were set alight in locations stretching from Littlehampton to Hastings.
Crews from East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service and West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service said all were believed to be deliberately started.
They warned the attacks had put lives at risk both through the fires and because firefighters where being unnecessarily occupied.
A West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: "It is a very dangerous and irresponsible thing for anyone to do."
The first incident took place in Broadwood Rise, in Crawley, at 7.49pm on Friday, where a car was torched in a residential street.
It was followed two hours later by a blaze in the West Hill car park in Salvington, Worthing, at around 10pm. Firefighters said a car was deliberately set alight in one of the most remote parking spaces.
The third attack was in a layby off the A22 in Golden Cross, near Hailsham, where a car was torched at 4.48am on Saturday.
Another happened minutes later in Oakcroft Gardens, Littlehampton at 4.57am, where a car was set alight and completely burnt out.
The attacks continued on Saturday night. Firefighters were called to deal with a parked car on fire outside the Brighton Motel in South Coast Road, Peacehaven, at 11.45pm.
Another crew was sent out to Magdalen Road, in St Leonard's, at 1.59am yesterday (Sunday, May 17), where a sixth vehicle had been torched.
Shortly afterwards, at 2.26am, a plumber's Vauxhall Vivaro van was ignited where it was parked in Boundary Road, Worthing.
The final blaze reported was in Fairfields, in Herstmonceux, near Hailsham, where two parked vans were discovered on fire at 2.58am.
Firefighters said one had been deliberately set alight and the flames had spread to the other.
The fire services said each of the fires had been put out within half an hour. No-one had been in or around the vehicles, which were all parked, and nobody was hurt in any of the incidents.
They have been working with Sussex Police to try to track any possible culprits.