It’s Arson Awareness Week and this year’s theme is reducing residential arson. One of the main motivations for home arson is curiosity and these types of fires are most often set by children.
According to the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA), fires set by children are responsible for more than 100 fire-related deaths, nearly 1,000 burn injuries, and hundreds of millions of dollars in property losses each year. Children are often the victims in these fires. It’s scary because curiosity about fire is natural for children, but the fires they set are usually the most dangerous!
The USFA states that juveniles accounted for roughly 46% of arson arrests between 2005-2010. Also, a child’s bedroom accounts for 40% of child-playing home fires. If you are worried that your child may be experimenting with fire, here are nine important tips from the USFA:
- Explain that matches and lighters are tools, not toys!
- Never use lighters, matches or fire for fun. Children will mimic you.
- Praise your child for practicing responsible behaviors and showing respect for fire.
- Always supervise young children when they are around fire.
- Never leave matches or lighters within reach of children. Keep them out of reach in high, locked cabinets.
- Use child-resistant lighters, but remember that they are not child-proof.
- Regularly inspect your home for fire hazards and make sure your smoke alarms are working.
- Plan and practice home fire-escape drills that include two ways out from every room.
- Install residential fire sprinklers in your home.
Your safety is number one to us, so stay safe through all seasons. And if you are interested in a home policy, contact a Foremost agency to talk about a home insurance policy.