default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
Logout|My Dashboard

Vandals cause of trashcan blazes, Lodi Fire Department says

Fires at abandoned buildings also trending, department says

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Thursday, April 18, 2013 12:00 am | Updated: 7:05 am, Sat May 11, 2013.

Vandals are striking Lodi in two ways, according to the Lodi Fire Department.

One is by lighting fires in park trashcans, which has caused significant damage to nearby structures. The other consists of stacking combustible materials against the side of buildings, then setting them alight, possibly for warmth.

The Lodi Fire Department says these are trends that have developed within the previous two years and have garnered the city’s attention.

Trashcan fires in American Legion Park, in the 800 block of South Hutchins Street, have been the most predominant and recent examples of vandalism.

Thirteen reported fires have been set inside trashcans since October 2011, and they usually occur in the early morning hours, well before park patrol arrives.

“The nights have not been that cold during these instances, so I don’t believe it’s transients trying to stay warm,” said Lodi Fire Department Capt. Brian Jungeblut. “I believe they’re fires intentionally set for whatever reason. I don’t know the specific motives. If it was transients, I think we’d see more (fires) in other parks. Right now, they’re just targeting Legion Park.”

Jungeblut added that trashcan fires have occasionally sprouted in other parks.

A bathroom at Katzakian Park suffered $10,000 in damage after a trashcan torched the structure in August 2012. The fire, which happened two months after another city park suffered $8,000 in fire damage, burned the stucco and damaged the roof.

As a result of these fires, park patrollers have taken measures to prevent damage to buildings, said Jeff Hood, director of park, recreation and cultural services.

“It’s hard to stop people from doing this,” he said. “You just have to take measures to minimize the damage.”

Jungeblut said the police are also providing extra patrol around the park.

Fires started against the walls of vacant buildings have caused even greater damage in recent years.

From 2011 to 2012, four fires were set against two separate buildings — two fires outside each building — on Lodi’s Eastside.

“The fires have been started by stacking combustible materials up against the side of buildings,” said Jungeblut, adding that these could be warming fires for transients. “We haven’t seen one on the Eastside of town in quite a while. Transients move around a lot, so it’s hard to say weather it’s resolved itself or they’re just laying low.”

Contact reporter Kristopher Anderson at krisa@lodinews.com.

More about

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Use your real name. You must register with your full first and last name before you can comment. (And don't pretend you're someone else.)
  • 2 Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually oriented language.
  • 3 Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
  • 4 Be truthful. Don't lie about anyone or anything. Don't post unsubstantiated allegations, rumors or gossip that could harm the reputation of a person, company or organization.
  • 5 Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 6 Stay on topic. Make sure your comments are about the story. Don't insult each other.
  • 7 Tell us if the discussion is getting out of hand. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 8 Share what you know, and ask about what you don't.

Welcome to the discussion.

1 comment:

  • Doug Chaney posted at 3:38 pm on Thu, Apr 18, 2013.

    advocate Posts: 499

    Maybe Mr. Hood should ask the three amigos to hire more maintenance workers so those trash cans can be emptied more than once a week, whether they need it or not. Or how about springing for some of those solar garbage cans?



Popular Stories



Mailing List

Subscribe to a mailing list to have daily news sent directly to your inbox.

  • Breaking News

    Would you like to receive breaking news alerts? Sign up now!

  • News Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily news headlines? Sign up now!

  • Sports Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily sports headlines? Sign up now!

Manage Your Lists