5 reasons to teach children not to play with fire

Fire has captured the imagination of men since the beginning of civilization. Combine that with the curiosity of a child and you have a deadly combination.

How deadly?

Between the years 2007 and 2011, an average of 7,100 home structure fires per year were caused by children play with lighters and matches. Sadly, every year an average of 77 people die in their homes because of these fires and another 750 are sent to the emergency room because of injuries. This causes approximately $172 million in property damage annually.

What can we do to prevent fires from happening in our home?

It takes two things:

  • Education
  • Consistency

Lets take a few minutes to look at the facts and then see what lessons we can draw from these.

  1. Not my child! Everyone thinks that their child knows better and would never play with fire. We must remember that young children often lack reasoning ability and fail to think of the consequences until its too late. Take the time to teach your child about the dangers of fire. Teach them that lighters and matches are dangerous and only adults can touch them. Don’t assume they know this, because 7,700 fires a year prove otherwise.
  2. My son knows better! Did you know that males started 83% of home structure fires and 93% of outside or unclassified fires? The lesson? Young males need positive role models in their lives to teach them about the dangers of fire.
  3. Outside fires (excluding trash or rubbish fires) peak during the afternoon hours, between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. during summer months.  The lesson? This seems to be the time when many children are home without adult supervision. Young people need adult supervision. They also need productive, fun and safe things to do during the summer vacation to keep them out of trouble.
  4. 24% of these fires were started in July, probably during the July 4th holiday celebration. Lesson? Teach your children about fireworks safety.
  5. Half of home playing structure fires (52%) had a lighter as the cause, while matches caused 18% of the fires. The lesson? Teach your kids that lighters and matches are dangerous and for adults use only. Adults also need to remember to hide matches and lighters in kid-safe places that are out of reach preferably in a locked cabinet.

In conclusion, we care about our young people. That is why we have shared this fire safety tips article today. We hope you have found the lessons helpful and will be able to use them as you consistently educate and work with your children about the dangers of playing with fire.


If you have any questions about the fire protection portion of your homeowners policy please reach out to your InsuranceHub representative. They are standing by waiting for your call.

Source: http://www.nfpa.org/research/reports-and-statistics/fire-causes/arson-and-juvenile-firesetting/children-playing-with-fire