WALNUT CREEK--Walnut Creek police and the Contra Costa Fire Protection District are investigating five suspicious vegetation fires that have broken out over the past eight days in the Arbolado neighborhood, during a week when temperatures have reached triple digits.

The latest incident occurred Thursday evening on a hill above Arbolado Park, burning a half acre before being extinguished by firefighters. A day earlier, an orchard was charred, leaving a black scar in its wake.

Police say they believe all of the incidents were caused by an arsonist, but have no leads or suspect information.

"Fire doesn't leave much evidence," said Bob Atlas, a batallion chief with the Contra Costa Fire Protection District. "It destroys everything it touches."

Fire officials investigate the latest suspicious vegetation fire, the latest of five suspicious fires in the Arbolado neighborhood over past week, in
Fire officials investigate the latest suspicious vegetation fire, the latest of five suspicious fires in the Arbolado neighborhood over past week, in Walnut Creek, Calif., on Thursday, May 15, 2014. (Karina Ioffee/ Bay Area News Group)

The suspicious fires come at a time when temperatures over the past several days have reached 100 degrees in Walnut Creek. Five Contra Costa fire stations have closed over the past three years after the failure of a 2012 parcel tax. Two other stations lost a company each in Walnut Creek and Concord.

Several fire agencies in Alameda County have also sent units to help fight multiple fires in San Diego County.

Residents who have any information about the incidents are asked to contact Walnut Creek police or the county fire department's arson hotline at 1-866-50-ARSON.

Follow Karina Ioffee at Twitter.com/kioffee.




Fire officials investigate the latest suspicious vegetation fire, the latest of five suspicious fires in the Arbolado neighborhood over past week, in
Fire officials investigate the latest suspicious vegetation fire, the latest of five suspicious fires in the Arbolado neighborhood over past week, in Walnut Creek, Calif., on Thursday, May 15, 2014. (Karina Ioffee/ Bay Area News Group)