Children's natural curiosity about fire can have deadly consequences. Thousands of children are injured or killed each year in home fires. About 40 percent of them are under age 5, so never underestimate the ability of a child to start matches or a lighter.
Talk openly about fire safety with children, beginning at a young age, and practice fire safety in your home.
- Store matches and lighters out of children's reach and sight, preferably in a locked cabinet.
- Teach children that matches and lighters are tools for adults, not toys.
- Teach toddlers to tell a grown-up when they find matches and lighters but to not touch them.
- Teach school-age children to bring any matches and lighters to an adult.
- Never use matches or lighters as amusement for children. They may imitate your actions.
- Use only child-resistant lighters, but keep them out of sight and reach of children and remember that they're child-resistant, not child-proof.
- If you suspect your child is overly curious about fire or is setting fires, contact the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department at 904-630-0445 and ask about the Firesetter Intervention Program.