About three weeks ago, the shop at Lower Sabie almost went up in flames - yet again. A suspect attempted to set fire to the newly re-built shop, but was thwarted when the security system drew attention to the fire and it was extinguished in time.
It was set outside the building close to a window. "It was definitely an arson attempt," said police spokesperson, Oubaas Coetser, as the shop cameras picked up a telltale flare that typically occurs when a flammable substance such as petrol, mixed with a slow burning substance like diesel or oil, is ignited.
The shop was rebuilt less than a year ago, after a devastating fire almost completely destroyed it over the Easter Weekend, 2004. Police then strongly suspected arson and the case it still open. The fire caused an estimated R4 million worth of damages, including goods inside the shop to an estimated value of R3,5 million. Coetser says the police are waiting for forensic test results and have not ruled out the possibility of a link between the two incidents.