TWO speed cameras were damaged in the space of just four days in near-identical arson attacks.
A burning tyre was placed on the A51 Vicars Cross camera at 4am on Sunday, then on the Hoole Road camera at 12.50am on Wednesday.
Firefighters were called on both occasions and believe the same culprit may be responsible.
Watch Manager Tony Jones, of Chester Fire Station, said: 'I would suspect someone is going round specifically with this in mind.
'People do not generally walk around carrying tyres.'
Lee Murphy, project manager for the Cheshire Safety Camera Partnership, said: 'It is incomprehensible that people may want to jeopardise this road safety measure.
'This could put lives at risk, but it will have no effect upon our strategy.
'Safety cameras are there to reduce the unacceptably high number of people being injured on our roads by speeding motorists.'
Mr Murphy said the cost of replacing the damaged cameras is £30,000, which will have to be claimed back from the government.
He said: 'As with any act of criminal damage there will be an investigation. The second incident could be a copycat thing or it could be the same people.
'It might be a random act of vandalism of someone caught speeding who has a grudge.'
Partnership officer, Sgt Paul Martin added: 'Cheshire Police take such acts of vandalism very seriously.
'In the past offenders found guilty of damaging safety cameras have faced serious consequences.'
Anyone with information on the attacks should call police on 0845 458 0000 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111. firstname.lastname@example.org