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How We Tackle Arson

Our Arson Reduction Strategy

Last updated  17 July 2018

Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue Service have two dedicated Arson Reduction Officers delivering our countywide Arson Reduction Strategy. They work in partnership with other agencies to reduce arson by implementing interventions in three key areas.

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Environmental Interventions: aimed at removing the opportunities for arsonists to commit offences, removing potential targets for arson offences and improving security in respect of targets for arson offences that cannot be removed.

Investigation-based Interventions: aimed at assisting the police and other partner agencies in the identification of ‘hot spots’, patterns, series and trends in respect of arson offences.

Educational Interventions: aimed at educating offenders and potential offenders to remove or prevent development of the motivation for engaging in deliberate fire setting behaviour.

Environmental Interventions

Environmental Action Days (EADs)

These are multi agency initiatives involving teams of people to carry out a sweep through designated areas to identify, process and, where necessary, remove the opportunities and targets for arsonists such as fly tipped combustible waste, other insecure combustible materials and abandoned or unlicensed vehicles. They also seek to identify potential targets where improved security could deter arsonists, such as derelict or unused buildings, insecure outbuildings and insecure combustible materials (i.e. the contents of skips and wheelie bins). Each team has a representative from the Fire Service, Police, DVLA, Council waste management teams and if appropriate other departments are invited to help such as Trading Standards, and Housing.

EADs demonstrate that the partners represented can work together to improve the environment, reduce crime and anti-social behaviour, improve public safety, provide reassurance for the people living in that area and improve their confidence in the ability of the partners to deal with issues that cause them concern.

Investigation-based Interventions

The Arson Reduction Officers conduct analysis of Fire Service data to identify ‘hot spots’, patterns, series and trends in respect of arson offences and share this information with relevant partners to ensure a joint approach is taken to dealing with arson as the sharing of data often reveals that the arson is part of a wider pattern of anti-social behaviour in the area.

Educational Interventions

Firefighters, the Arson Reduction Officers, the Service's Youth Development Officers and partner agencies work on a variety of interventions to engage young people in youth development.  The different interventions include:

  • Year 2 school visits
  • Safety Squad (Years 5 and 6)
  • Prison Me? No Way (Year 9)
  • Young Offender Intervention Programmes

For further information on current youth development carried out by Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue Service please go to our children, young people and schools page.

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