Series of Arsons Worries Community
But, accidental fires aren't the department's biggest problem because Chief Larry Paynter and his crew are experiencing burnout after chasing the smoke trail from a series of arsons.
"It's a headache for me," he admitted. "It's hard on the volunteers because they've all got jobs and they spend a lot of time on these arson fires."
Last Thursday night, someone started four fires at mobile homes in one neighborhood. Scared neighbors are taking precautions.
"I'm trying to clear the leaves away from my house so he can't start the woods on fire and burn up to my residence," explained Mark Maeder.
Targets have included homes, trailers and commercial buildings. No one has been hurt because all but one of the structures was abandoned. The common link is how they were started, although the fire chief won't be specific.
"We don't want word to get out on how he's starting them in case somebody else decides they wanted to burn something else and blame it on this guy," Paynter explained.
Call the Arson Hotline toll-free at 1-800-392-7766, if you have information about the fires in Miller and Morgan counties.