Saturday was one of the worst nights yet in the spate of car blazes that Sweden’s third largest city has suffered since July, with at least 70 cars burnt out in less than three months.
“As soon as one fire was put out, then another one came,” Marie Keismar, from the Malmö police told Sweden’s TT newswire.
All of the 15 fires were in the city's immigrant-heavy Seved and Rosengård districts, with the most serious danger coming from a bus powered by gas which was set on fire, in Rolfsgatan on the edge of the Seved district, raising a serious risk that one of its cylinders might explode.
The man arrested is suspected to have been behind the bus fire, but police said they believe they may be able to connect him to some of the other fires.
“He is initially suspected of causing aggravated criminal damage by fire,” Kim Hild, of the Malmö police, told Sydsvenskan newspaper.
Hild said that more vehicles might later turn out to have been burned than the 15 initially reported.
“We still do not have a completely clear picture of how many vehicles have been burnt, it may be more.”
Malmö police have called in both a helicopter and drones to speed up their responses to the fires. Mattias Sköld, from the local fire and rescue services told Sydsvenksan that he felt that the emergency services were now performing smoothly.
“The feeling is that everything went pretty well, even if there was a hell of a lot to do,” he said.