Firefighters have spent 3,700 hours fighting Accomack arson fires

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Photo by Jay Diem. Fire at the Whispering Pines Motel in Tasley, Va. on Tuesday, March 12, 2013. The motel is the largest fire set so far. Parts of the motel date to the 1930s.

ACCOMACK, Va. – There have been over 70 arsons on the Eastern Shore and the culprit is still out there somewhere.

Firefighters have spent 3,700 hours fighting these fires which have destroyed 74 abandoned buildings in the area.

When a fire is reported, about 20 firefighters respond and they stay on the scene for about 2.5 hours. This time has been quickly adding up for volunteer firefighters there.

So far, no injuries have been reported.

Now the community is coming together to help the fire crews working overtime to catch the firebug.

If you would like to help, an account has been set up at Shore Bank in Olney, Va. The bank has also made a donation of $1,000 to the fund.

Anyone wishing to contribute to the fund may drop off donations at any Shore Bank branch location or they can be mailed to:

Shore Bank c/o Accomack Firefighter’s Assistance Fund, Post Office Box 920, Onley, VA 23418.

You can also contact Billie Jean Miles at the Accomack County Department of Public Safety at (757) 789-3610 or (757) 824-4274 for assistance. The Department’s physical address is 24420 Lankford Highway or mail may be sent to them at Post Office Box 102, Tasley, VA 23441.

You can also volunteer your time by helping to clean equipment or fire hoses, assisting with one of their upcoming fundraisers, or providing administrative support. Click here for more information. 

Volunteer firefighters are also still in need of items to help restock the fire departments with rehab items and supplies. Items include coffee, hot chocolate, creamer, sugar, sweeteners, coffee cups, regular cups, bottled water, sport drinks, protein & granola bars, paper products, cleaning supplies, etc.

Here are the drop-off locations:

• Pocomoke Animal Hospital, Pocomoke, MD
• Contours, Exmore
• Tangled Salon, Exmore
• Cycle Creations Highway Market, New Church
• Arcadia Nursing & Rehab ~ Quail Run, Nelsonia
• Martha’s Kitchen, Saxis
• H.W. Drummonds, Greenbush
• Attitudes Fitness, Onancock
• Walmart, Onley
• A.J’s Meat Barn, Cheriton
• Dockside Properties, Chincoteague
• Chris’ Bait and Tackle, Capeville
• Cape Charles Rescue Squad
• Shore Bank, Onley ~ Exmore ~ Onley Headquarters & Chincoteague

Anyone with information about the arsons is encouraged to text, call or email 757-655-1437. The person with a tip that leads to an arrest and conviction in these cases could be eligible for a reward of up to $25,000.

by Doris Taylor