FIREBUGS have been slammed for putting lives at risk during a spate of arson attacks on cars in Kirby Cross.

Vehicles were torched on three roads in a matter of minutes. The blazes were less than 500m apart.

A resident in Polley Close, off Beverley Drive, spotted the blazing Volkswagen outside his home at about 11.13pm on Saturday.

A fire crew from Frinton was called to tackle the blaze, which was extinguished by 11.45pm.

Crews from Weeley and Frinton were called to another blaze in Honywood Way, off Edenside, at 11.35pm after a Renault and a number of wooden panels were set on fire. That fire was put out by 11.56pm.

Firefighters from Clacton were then called to tackle a third blaze in Bloomfield Avenue just before 11.45pm. The fire, which was started in a van, was extinguished within five minutes.

It is thought all the fires were started deliberately.

An Essex Police spokesman said a 29-year-old man from the Walton area was arrested on suspicion of committing arson.

The suspect was questioned and released on bail until April 23, pending further inquiries.