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Another Suspicious Fire: Recent Blaze Destroys Ferrara School Playscape

Only days before Saturday's early morning fire on Harmac Drive, a few streets away a wooden piece of playground equipment was also apparently intentionally set ablaze at Ferrara Elementary School.

As state and local investigators combed through the wreckage of 20 Harmac Drive following Saturday's early morning fire there, neighbors told East Haven Patch the blaze — which has since been ruled an arson — was actually the second suspicious fire in the same neighborhood within the past several days.

Playscape Set Ablaze

The residents reported that a wooden playscape at Ferrara School was set on fire and destroyed just a few days before Saturday's house fire on Harmac.

The East Haven elementary school, which is located at 22 Maynard Road, is only a couple of streets away from the now burnt-out home on Harmac.

East Haven Fire Assistant Chief Chuck Licata confirmed the residents' reports.

"No One Saw It Burning'

Licata told East Haven Patch that the playscape — a large 30-foot-long wooden boat many of the children played on at the school — was set ablaze sometime during the previous weekend.

"But with where it was located on the school grounds and school out for the weekend, no one saw it burning," he said.

A passerby finally noticed the damage to the equipment on Monday, Oct. 8. And the incident was reported to police and fire officials. The boat has since been removed from the school's grounds.

Investigations Continue

The investigation into the playground fire, as well as Harmac Drive, are open and ongoing.

East Haven fire and police officials also have a third separate and apparently unrelated investigation into the three fires at the old Neubig Dairy Farm propoerty as well, which have been ruled arson.

Information Requested

Anyone with information about any of these fires is asked to call the state's Arson Tip Line at 1-800-84ARSON (1-800-842-7766).

Or, those with any information can contact the East Haven Fire Department at (203)-468-3840 or the East Haven Police Department at 203-468-3820 or email crimetips@easthavenpolice.com.

Kim M October 16, 2012 at 01:18 PM
This sickens me! I would make the bet that the town will do nothing to replace this playground equipment. Ferrara has become so run down over the past 8 years that I have been back in town. The PTA raised all that money to put in those playscapes, and they have been falling apart and have endured so much graffiti. I wish people would take pride in their town and not allow this to happen and the BOE would support things like simple maintenence of these playgrounds. Children's physical health is essential to learning, and they need safe areas to play. The town needs to wake up if they want to keep and attract young families. And obviously there is a twisted arsonist on the loose in the Foxon residential area. Thankfully they have only burned abandoned buildings and no one has been hurt. People need to have a watchful eye and report anything amiss. Would be nice for the police to increase patrols as well.

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