Police have zero tolerance for people who deliberately light fires and will continue to vigorously investigate suspicious fires.
That was the message from South Coast Police District Crime Manager Detective Inspector Scott Nelson, the same day a volunteer firefighter faced charges in Bega Court for allegedly lighting seven fires in the district.
Blake William Banner was granted conditional bail in Bega Court and will reappear on December 17.
Inspector Nelson, speaking at a press conference in Nowra in relation to Banner's arrest, said everyone has seen the devastation fires are causing across the state.
"We have zero tolerance for this type of behaviour," he said.
"We will continue to have zero tolerance and to respond to these reports and will continue to actively investigate.
"We all know the community in the Bega Valley Shire is well aware of the incident that happened to the township of Tathra last year and we continue to see it on the daily news, every night in northern NSW.
"This is a very serious offence. It is a very serious risk to the community, not only infrastructure but to the lives of the community down there and we take it very seriously."
He said there were serious penalties for such offences, including substantial time in jail.
"It is disappointing it's an RFS volunteer," he said. "I think every member of the community, not just here on the South Coast, but anywhere are concerned.
"These people are here to protect us and respond to these things and its disturbing when these things happen.
"We continue to work with the RFS, with their investigators and local chain of command. They take this seriously, as we do, especially at this time of year and the threat it causes.
"As part of the response, we will be proactively identifying offenders. We have people we are aware of in the community who commit this sort of behaviour and we will actively go out and speak to them on the front foot to try and prevent these attacks occurring.
"We always need information and we will act on information and respond to it."
Inspector Nelson urged anyone with information about suspicious fire activity to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au.
Meanwhile, a second man is assisting police with inquiries and is expected to be charged in relation to a couple of small spot fires south of Eden on Wednesday.
Police and NSW Rural Fire Service personnel responded to reports of small fires next to the Princes Highway at Scrubby Creek and Edrom Road about 11am.