Novelty Lighters Responsible for Fires Across Nation

During the 2008 Arson Awareness Week, which began on May 4th and runs through the 10th, the United States Fire Administration (USFA) said it is working to educate all Americans about the dangers of novelty and toylike lighters in the hands of children. This year's theme is Toylike Lighters – Playing with Fire.

Toylike or novelty lighters have been responsible for injuries, deaths, and accidents across the nation, according to USFA. State and local governments are taking action by banning the sale of novelty lighters and limiting their distribution.

"It is critical to focus public attention on the dangers of these toylike lighters," said Greg Cade, U.S. fire administrator. "We are pleased to join our partners at the National Association of State Fire Marshals, National Volunteer Fire Council, and the Congressional Fire Services Institute in supporting the ban of toylike and novelty lighters."

Effective January 1, 2008, USFA's National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS) began collecting information specifically about novelty and toy-like lighters. NFIRS data indicate that lighters play a role nearly equal to matches in residential child-play fires, and some studies show that lighters tend to be the preferred ignition source. When children set fires in the home, the most common area of fire origin is the bedroom, and the material ignited is often bedding, mattresses, or clothing.

In 2002, the National Fire Protection Association estimated 13,900 child-playing structure fires were reported in the U.S., with associated losses of 210 civilian deaths, 1,250 civilian injuries, and $339 million in direct damage. Most child-playing home fires are started with lighters or matches. The median age of children who start reported fires by playing is 5 years old, compared to a median age of 4 years old for fatal victims, and a median age in the late teens for nonfatal injuries.

The major goal of Arson Awareness Week is to create a national awareness and understanding of the arson-related problem in the United States by encouraging communities to get involved in the dissemination of arson awareness information by creating a simple, identifiable, and unifying message.

For more information, including a media kit, poster, examples of State and local novelty lighter ban legislation, and a regional list of youth set fires, visit the Arson Awareness Week section of the USFA Web site at www.usfa.dhs.gov/fireservice/subjects/arson/arson_awareness.shtm.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • Comply with OSHA’s Electronic Recordkeeping Requirements

    Collect relevant incident data and generate accurate OSHA 300, 300A, and 301 regulatory reports, including 300A CSV files for easy electronic submission to OSHA.

  • Complete Online Safety Training Courses

    Deliver state-of-the art, online safety training courses to your organization with IndustrySafe Training Management Software. Generate reports to track training compliance and automatically notify learners of upcoming or overdue classes.

  • Easy to Use Safety Inspection App

    Conduct inspections on the go with IndustrySafe’s mobile app. Complete safety audits at job sites and remote locations—with or without web access.

  • Track Key Safety Performance Indicators

    IndustrySafe’s Dashboard Module allows organizations to easily track safety KPIs and metrics. Gain increased visibility into your business’ operations and safety data.

  • Industry Safe
comments powered by Disqus