Big rigs torched in East New York
Cops are Probing Mysterious Attacks on Trucks Parked Overnight
Does arson abound, or is it just “horsin’ around?”
That’s what the NYPD’s Arson and Explosion Squad is trying to determine after the cabs of seven private trash-hauling trucks parked on streets in East New York mysteriously went up in flames overnight Sunday, in the latest in a series of suspected pre-dawn arson attacks on big rigs parked in the neighborhood.
The New York Post reported that the first blaze Sunday erupted at about 2:30 a.m., followed by six more within an hour in trucks that were parked at five locations: Linwood Street and Wortman Avenue, Chestnut Sreet and Atlantic Avenue, Essex Street and Stanley Avenue, Shepherd Street and Stanley Avenue, and Linwood Street and Stanley Avenue.
Police told the Post that five of the cabs torched were owned by a company identified as Jahali and were hired by Newark, N.J.-based TTS Trucking to haul waste from the city to Pennsylvania. The two other cabs bore the markings “East Trucking.”
Investigators said the blazes may have been set off by Molotov cocktail-like devices thrown through the windows of the cabs. By daybreak, at least one truck was left a smoldering pile of twisted metal.
“It’s crazy,” said Jahali co-owner Ricardo Caballan. “there are security cameras on all the buildings.”
The Post quoted a law enforcement source as saying the Sunday attacks were “definitely arson,” but added that some investigators also believed they could have been merely an act of neighborhood horseplay. Either way, the source said, the probers will study the security camera footage and reportedly have not ruled out the possibility that there may be some “internal beef” inside the trucking companies involved.
Whatever the motives, truck owner-operators in the area told ABC News that arson attacks on parked big rigs are an ongoing problem, and they said at least 20 trucks have been torched in recent months.
“It’s scary,” said driver Nazim Khan. “You could be sleeping in one of those trucks.”
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