YOBS are being targeted in a crackdown on anti-social behaviour across South Tyneside.
Fire, police, council and housing chiefs today joined forces to target trouble hotspots across the borough as part of the Lighter Nights campaign.
As the lighter nights arrive, so reports of bad behaviour rise.
That’s something the campaign, which runs until April 14, hopes to prevent.
Ray Houghton, Watch Manager for Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service said: “Statistics show historically across the region anti-social behaviour increases during the onset of lighter nights.
“Although it is cold at the moment, the weather is likely to improve throughout the spring, and young people will begin to socialise outdoors more often.
“Our aim is to change the behaviour of some young people who cause fires through their anti-social behaviour.
“We will be encouraging them to do other activities and be educating them about the dangers relating to deliberate fires.”
Brian Walker, Chief Inspector of South Tyneside Area Command, said: “We know anti-social behaviour is an issue often raised by residents and continues to be one of their main concerns affecting their quality of life and making them feel unsafe in their own homes.
“Through this campaign, we will work with our partners to tackle these issues.
“We will be increasing patrols to both reassure residents and deter and target any disorder and anti-social behaviour.”
Coun Tracey Dixon, lead member for area management and community safety at South Tyneside Council, said: “Everyone looks forward to lighter nights, but unfortunately there can also be an increase in anti-social behaviour at this time of year.
“We are working closely with the police and the fire and rescue service to ensure that families can enjoy the many things South Tyneside has to offer during the warmer weather, and the council is taking a lead on tackling underage sales of alcohol, which can often contribute to antisocial behaviour.”
The Lighter Nights campaign is a joint initiative between Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, Northumbria Police, South Tyneside Council, South Tyneside Homes.