skip to content

Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

Pupils are benefiting from a high-profile campaign

17/03/2015

Grass Fires
Flames Aren't Games

Hundreds of pupils in the west of the county will learn about the perils of playing with fire as part of a high profile campaign.

"The proactive work that we are doing with young people across the area is having a really positive impact on the number of small fires we are experiencing. We have seen, very clearly, that as engagement with pupils increases, grass fires decrease." 

Carmel Warren - Prevention Manager for the west of the county

Community Safety Officers will be visiting schools across the area to talk to young people about the risks involved in setting grass fires in the run up to the Easter holiday.

The events are part of the hugely successful Flames Aren’t Games initiative which has seen the number of small fires being set drop dramatically since it as launched in 2011.

In the west of the county, there were 205 such incidents between April 1 and August 31 2014. This compares to 276 over the same period of time in 2013 and 574 in 2011.

The figures for 2012 are not comparable due to the extremely wet weather during the summer months.

The CSOs will visit:

•    Blakeley Heath Primary School in Wombourne today
•    Hednesford Valley High School in Cannock on March 19
•    Edgecliff High School in Kinver on March 25
•    Billbrook Middle School in Codsall on March 30

The team has already given talks at St Bernadette’s Primary School in Wombourne and Barlaston Primary School. They will visit other schools as the warmer weather arrives in the coming months.

Carmel Warren, Prevention Manager for the west of the county, said: "The proactive work that we are doing with young people across the area is having a really positive impact on the number of small fires we are experiencing. We have seen, very clearly, that as engagement with pupils increases, grass fires decrease.

"We strongly believe that by educating children from a young age, they will be aware of the potential risks and consequences of deliberately setting fires and will not take part in this kind of anti-social behaviour as they get older.

"We are also keen to highlight the fact that firefighters may be diverted from a house fire or road traffic collision because they have been called to a grass fire. This scenario could see innocent people suffer injury or even death – it is that serious. The culprits can also face a fine of up to £5,000 or two years in prison as well as negatively affecting their future career prospects."