National Arson Awareness Week: May 7th – May 13th, 2017

Filed under: City |

City of Duncanville – The United States Fire Administration (USFA) has announced the week of May 7th through May 13th, 2017 as Arson Awareness Week. This year’s theme is “Arson Prevention at Houses
of Worship”. It’s sad to think places of worship that are intended as a peaceful place, sometimes result in acts of violence, specifically arson. There are many reasons an arsonist may target these types of buildings but the result is often the same-burned buildings that may not be usable for months. So the key is to make the building less of an attractive target. Here are some tips to help prevent an intentional fire in your place of worship.

  • Maintain or install good exterior security lighting
  • Fence the property
  • Keep bushes and shrubs trimmed
  • Remove old brush or trash that may have accumulated
  • Keep the doors and windows securely locked when the building is not in use, and repair damaged doors, hardware, and windows
  • Install exterior security cameras
  • Install additional fire protection- sprinklers and monitored alarms
  • Install a monitored security system
  • Limit the number of people with keys
  • Keep interior storage to a minimum- don’t provide extra combustibles

Many older places of worship do not have much fire protection. Codes were different, attitudes were different and thought was that the building was only occupied once or twice a week so there was not much need for it. Things are much different now, we know a fire can happen anytime-not just when the building is being used for services. So our codes and attitudes have changed to reflect a higher degree of safety. Of course many of the improvements would be voluntary on the older buildings. Money is always an issue but some of the suggestions listed above don’t cost very much and can make the structure a much less desirable target for an arsonist.

For more information visit https://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/arson_prevention or call the Duncanville Fire Prevention at 972-780-5049 or 972-780-5047.