An accidental Sunday afternoon.
Fire investigators estimate a loss of $350,000 between the three homes; however, the property loss is just one result of the blaze that was sparked by a 12-year-old boy playing with a lighter.
Irreplaceable mementos were, no doubt, among the items lost. In this case, everyone escaped the incident without serious injury, including two dogs. One man was treated for smoke inhalation and released at the scene.
The Red Cross is assisting seven people displaced by the fire.
Fire is a fascinating thing to young people, but education and observation are key to preventing accidental fires.
Here are a few safety tips from National Fire Protection Association to keep yourself and your kids safe from setting an unintended fire:
- Store matches and lighters out of children's reach and sight, up high, preferably in a locked cabinet.
- Never use lighters or matches as a source of amusement for children; they may imitate you.
- If your child expresses curiosity about fire or has been playing with fire, calmly but firmly explain that matches and lighters are tools for adults only.
- Use only lighters designed with child-resistant features. Remember child-resistant does not mean child proof.
- Teach young children and school-age children to tell an adult if they see matches or lighters.
- Never leave matches or lighters in a bedroom or any place where children may go without supervision.
- If you suspect your child is intentionally setting fires or unduly fascinated with fire, get help. Your local fire department, school, or community counseling agency can put you in touch with trained experts.
What is your experience with kids and fire? Have you found any tips and tricks for teaching fire safety or limiting your child’s access to fire starters and accelerants?