Fire safety

Thames Valley Police works closely with its partners in the Fire and Rescue Services to investigate arson and prosecute offenders.

However, we believe that because of the danger posed by arson, the public should take a few simple precautions to minimise the risk.

Your home

  • Keep escape routes clear of rubbish and rubbish containers.
  • If possible, store rubbish and bins in a secure area and only place out on the day of collection.
  • Do not allow combustible materials eg garden cuttings or second-hand furniture to accumulate in gardens or near the house – either take to a waste collection site or contact your local council to arrange removal (there may be a charge).
  • Discuss with your family and agree an escape plan in the event of a fire.
  • Fit at least two smoke alarms to provide an early warning. Your local fire station will be willing to provide free fire safety advice.

Your business

  • Carry out a full risk assessment of your property and keep a record in your safety file.
  • Ensure your premises are secure (including the perimeter area) and keep alarms and exterior lighting on at night.
  • Waste bins should be chained and stored away from the building.
  • Remove from view other combustible material, such as packaging and, if possible, lock it away.
  • Warn your staff about the dangers of arson and that they should report suspicious activity.
  • Ensure that the fire protection equipment you have installed (extinguishers, sprinklers etc) are in good working order.

Firesetter intervention

Firesetter schemes are designed to prevent offending. They focus on children and young people who have been identified as being at an early stage of offending behaviour and refer them to a trained firesetter adviser.

Who is eligible?

A child or young person may benefit from a firesetter intervention if they have been involved or are at risk of being involved in firesetting behaviour, or are considered to have an ‘unusual’ or ‘unhealthy’ fascination with fire eg playing with matches.

How to refer someone to a firesetter scheme

Firesetter schemes are run by all three fire and rescue services in Thames Valley. Contact is made directly through the local fire service in your area ie Buckinghamshire, Berkshire or Oxfordshire.