THOUGHTLESS vandals are putting peoples' lives and property in danger by creating nuisance fires, the fire service has warned.

Fire crews were called out to multiple minor incidents in the north of the town last night, which they say could have prevented them from being able to respond to a major fire or crash.

One of these incidents saw fire fighters attend a wheelie bin fire in the grounds of the Hall i' th' Wood Museum at around 8.05pm last night.

The fire had been started by a gang of youths and involved a bin which had purposely been dragged to the area from somewhere else.

Then, shortly before 1am, crews were called to brazier on fire in Lenham Gardens, near Darcy Lever, where someone had been burning household waste.

Around half an hour later they responded to another wheelie bin fire in Stone Street, Tonge Moor.

They were then called back to Lenham Gardens just after 3am to a motor cycle fire, which they believe had been deliberately set alight on nearby grassland.

Following the busy night, fire fighters are urging residents to think about the potential consequences of their actions and the risks they could pose to other people.

Watch manager Andrew Kopicki, from Bolton North fire station, said: "When a fire engine is mobilised to an incident and it is on route it can be directed to an incident of higher priority such as a road traffic collision or a house fire so that the closest appliance attends.

"However once we arrive at the scene of an incident there is no facility to be redirected.

"That means if there was something of higher priority just around the corner we would not know about it.

"When we attend, for example, a wheelie bin fire or nuisance calls it means we are not in the best position that we could be to help people. And this is brought about by nuisance behaviour.

"It is potentially putting people's lives and property in danger and we just want to make people aware that through thoughtless actions you can have massive consequences on fire coverage in the Bolton borough."