Arson is a crime and should be reported to the police.
Ten key messages on the risk of arson
- Ensure you include the impact of arson in your workplace fire risk assessment. A large percentage of businesses fail to return to trading following a fire.
- Schools can be soft targets for arson. The impact on both the local community and pupils are potentially devastating. Speak to your local police crime prevention officer, they may be able to offer advice as to how you can protect (target harden) your building.
- Report accumulated or abandoned refuse to your local council. Do not let it become a target for arson.
- Anti-social behaviour is often a precursor to arson. Report such behaviour through your local neighbourhood policing team, neighbourhood watch team or through Crimestoppers.
- Protect your commercial property. Seek advice on security, good lighting and CCTV will often acts as a deterrent to the criminal.
- Visit your fire service’s website or the local fire station and speak to them about arson in your area. They are there to help.
- When closing down your business adopt a thorough closedown procedure considering:
- External doors are locked
- Internal doors are closed
- No unauthorised persons are left on the premises
- No accumulation of waste or rubbish
- Alarms are switched on
- Take responsibility and think of ways in which someone could start a fire inside or outside of your property. Act on any issues you find.
- Arson attacks on farms and small holdings do happen. Take simple precautions to reduce the likelihood of this happening. Lighting around barns and outbuildings will deter the opportunist thief and the would-be arsonist.
- As a parent or guardian contact your local fire service if you identify a child has been playing with matches within the home. They will often have helpful programmes to ensure child play behaviour doesn’t escalate to a serious fire.