Understanding why children set fires is the beginning to understanding
firesetting behavior. Parental involvement and activism is key to getting
help to children and possibly saving not only property and lives but also
the intervention of a firesetter at a young age may stave off a future
of adult firesetting tendancies.
Firesetters usually are 2-7 years old who find fire facinating and
begin to play with it to find out how it feels, how it burns and what
it does. At this age they usually do not understand how dangerous fire
Though curiosity is normal, parents and others need to take it very seriously
when they discover that a child is playing with fire.
Problem Firesetters can be very young but are usually around the
ages of 5-17 years old. These children usually light fires because of
emotional or mental problems rather than out of curiosity. Their problems
may be minor or severe. Chronic behaviors such as cruelty to animals,
extreme mood changes, bad relationships with other children are some traits
data on juvenile firesetters has revealed.
What Can You Do?
- Teach your children about fire and fire safety
- Control your child's access to fire