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Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

Microsite highlights dangers of deliberate fire-setting

19/05/2015

launch picture
Flames Aren't Games launch

Young people will be in with the chance of scooping a Playstation 4 if they visit a hard-hitting microsite which warns of the dangers of deliberate fire-setting.

"The microsite is just one of the ways we are communicating with young people about the risks they can create if they set deliberate fires. Some teenagers think that engaging in this type of anti-social behaviour is just a bit of fun but the fact of the matter is that these incidents can get out of hand very quickly with extremely serious consequences - the worst case scenario being the potential loss of life."

Head of Risk Reduction Jim Bywater

The Service has launched the microsite to raise awareness that a deliberate small fire can turn into a big problem. It can be accessed by visiting www.teenagecaveman.co.uk, where the Teenage Caveman animated video can also be viewed.

The microsite is part of the Flames Aren’t Games campaign which has seen small grass and bin fires dramatically decrease over the past four years.

The prize draw for the Playstation 4 is open to under 18-year-olds. They will automatically be entered into the competition simply by answering two questions on the microsite. The closing date is September 6 2015.

Head of Risk Reduction Jim Bywater said: "The microsite is just one of the ways we are communicating with young people about the risks they can create if they set deliberate fires. Some teenagers think that engaging in this type of anti-social behaviour is just a bit of fun but the fact of the matter is that these incidents can get out of hand very quickly with extremely serious consequences - the worst case scenario being the potential loss of life.

"They can also divert vital resources away from other emergencies, such as house fires and road traffic collisions, which require an immediate and rapid response from crews. The local economy can be negatively affected too with the bill for responding to deliberate fires and the cost of dealing with the aftermath totalling millions of pounds every year. Those responsible for starting deliberate fires can also face repercussions both now and in the future with possible prison sentences or a fine of up to £5,000 not to mention the fact that it may also hinder the culprits’ career prospects."

There were the following number of small fires between April 1 and August 31 2014:
• 205 in the west of the county
• 505 in the north of the county
• 156 in the east of the county

There were the following number of small fires between April 1 and August 31 2013:
• 276 in the west of the county
• 773 in the north of the county
• 232 in the east of the county

There were the following number of small fires between April 1 and August 31 2011:
• 574 in the west of the county
• 959 in the north of the county
• 373 in the east of the county

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