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Children and fire

Playing with fire

Every year homes and property are destroyed in fires started accidentally and deliberately by children. Arson by young people is a serious problem.

Teach children about the dangers of fire

You should tell children about how destructive fire can be and how rapidly it can spread. Older children may know that fire is dangerous, but might not realise how uncontrollable it can become, or that breathing toxic smoke can quickly make you lose consciousness.

Teach them how to be safe with fire

Encourage children to tell you if they find matches or lighters. Let them see you being careful about fire risks.

Older children can take part in safe activities with fire, like lighting a bonfire or a candle while supervised by an adult.

Older teenagers need to be told clearly about the risks of fire from smoking. Even if they don’t smoke, they may go to parties with people who do.

Let them know the dangers of hoax calls

Hoax calls to the Isle of Man Fire and Rescue Service put lives in danger. You should inform your children of the danger and consequences of hoax emergency calls.

Fire appliances attending a hoax call are unavailable to attend a serious incident, such as a house fire.

If they seem fascinated…

  • Some children can become dangerously obsessed with fires. If you know any children who you think may be lighting fires deliberately you need to do something about it

  • Children can play with fire for reasons other than curiosity – for example, to get attention or because of peer pressure

  • The Isle of Man Fire and Rescue Service offers a confidential service where a specially trained officer visits you and your child at home to give advice and education. These services are safe and gentle, using discussion, videos, projects and so on 

  • Parents or guardians have a legal responsibility for any illegal actions carried out by their children For further advice please contact the Community Safety Team on +44 1624 647303.

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