VANDALS are setting fire to wheelie bins in Bolton so they can inhale toxic fumes, police have warned.

It comes after a 'massive' amount of damage to Longsight Park on Saturday night, when a group of youths set fire to a bin on the playing area.

Writing on Facebook, Greater Manchester police said they had received a number of reports in recent weeks.

A post read: "Longsight park has been subject to massive damage recently as a result of wheelie bins being set on fire in the middle of the children’s play area.

"This type of damage has a wide spread effect on communities and renders public spaces unusable.

"Intelligence from Greater Manchester fire and rescue suggests that wheelie bins are being set on fire and fumes from the bins are inhaled.

"Both GMP and GMFRS have received several reports of bins being set on fire in recent weeks.

"This is extremely dangerous as the fumes from the plastic are highly toxic."

They advised residents to remove their bins from the kerbside after they had been emptied.

The post continued: "Please do not leave waste bins out on bin collection day.

"Once they have been emptied please take them back onto your properties and out of general public view if possible.

"The neighbourhood team are working towards dealing with this problem as it sad to see a children’s play area destroyed.

"Any information regarding this please contact 101 or contact GMP using the live chat facility on GMP’S website."

On Saturday night, members of Bolton North fire crew were called to Longsight Park where youths had set a fire to one of the park's bins.

One fire engine and five members of the fire crew attended the scene at around 8.20pm and remained there for approximately 20 minutes.

A Bolton Council outreach officer also attended to speak to the youths.