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Arson burns down Centennial Park playground in Duncan

Blaze happened in the early morning of Friday, May 26

RCMP are looking for the person who burned down the playground in Centennial Park in Duncan in the early morning hours of Friday, May 26.

At 2:40 a.m. RCMP officers were called to assist the Duncan Fire Department.

Const. Alex Santaga was on the scene four minutes later, and found the playground structure fully engulfed in flames.

“I was so disappointed to arrive and find our popular children’s park was on fire,” he said. “This is a big hit for the community as we come into our summer months when this park is normally very busy.”

RCMP are asking for the public to help identify who might be responsible for the blaze. People who have cameras on their properties that may have captured people walking in the area between 2 a.m. and when police responded are asked to contact the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP at 250-748-5522..

“As you can see from the photograph, significant damage was done to the playground,” said Inspector Chris Bear, commander of the North Cowichan/Duncan detachment. “I know the investigators will do everything that can to determine who is responsible, however a big piece for this investigation with be community members reaching out to us with information.”

Duncan Mayor Michelle Staples said that as of Friday morning the large playground structure that burned has been cordoned off, but the rest of the park, including the popular water park, was not damaged and is open to the public.

“It’s frustrating when anything like this happens in [our] community. We really value and cherish our parks and public spaces, particularly those for children and families,” she said. “For now, the water park is still a great place to get out of the heat.”

She said when the destroyed equipment might be rebuilt or replaced will take some time to sort out, along with how much it will cost.

Police are looking for the person who burned down the playground in Centennial Park in Duncan on Friday, May 26, 2023. (RCMP handout)

Andrea Rondeau

About the Author: Andrea Rondeau

I returned to B.C. and found myself at the Cowichan Valley Citizen.
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