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Youth Firesetting Prevention & Intervention


General Program Information

Helpline (800) 500-8897

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension reports that in 2010, youths from 10 to 17 years of age represented 57 percent of arson arrests in Minnesota. The United States Fire Administration reports that the majority of youth firesetting is done by children younger than 10 years of age.

Children are naturally curious about fire. In fact, children and adults alike find fire fascinating.  Fire is part of American culture, from the baby’s birthday candle and the holiday table to the 4th of July fireworks, the cozy fireplace, and the recreational campfire.

Curiosity in children is normal; starting fires is not — nor is it a phase. Most children who start fires are mimicking familiar adult behavior and typically, firesetting is not a sign of “pyromania.” In fact, fire is potentially deadly, and it moves fast. Young children just don’t understand that, and older children overestimate their ability to control a fire. Most people, even adults, don’t fully understand how powerful fire can become.

Research shows that without intervention, youthful firesetting behavior tends to continue. Children who repeatedly start fires need help! 



Understanding and Prevent Youth Firesetting (Schools) (Parents/Caregivers)



Youth Firesetting Prevention and Intervention.

This PowerPoint is designed to assist in building Youth Firesetting Prevention and Intervention Teams and enrolling stakeholders in the possibility of the program and inspire them to get involved


Minnesota Model

Program Coordinators
Generic SOG
Follow up Document
Participation Release Form
Onsite Youth Firesetting Questionnaire
Privacy Form 
Authorization to Release Information
Intake Form


Educator Resource Links 

Below are links that we felt would be of benefit to you as teachers and educators.
Please take the time to visit the many valuable resources that are available to you on the subject of juvenile firesetting and fire safety.

Fire Proof Children, Counseling Children Who Play with Fire
Youth Firesetters Resource Guide
ADD and Firesetting: The Connection
SOS Fires, Youth Intervention Programs
Focus Adolescent Services, Firesetting and Youth
Fireproof Children, Why are Children Fascinated with Fire?
U.S. Fire Administration, Fire Safety Education Directory
The Heat Team (Regents Burn Unit)