EMMITSBURG, MD - The United States Fire Administration (USFA) is pleased to announce the theme for the
2013 Arson Awareness Week: Reducing Residential Arson
. USFA and its partners will use the week of May 5th
to the 11th to focus public attention on residential arson and provide communities with tools to reduce the
incidence of this crime. The goal for this year's Arson Awareness Week (AAW) is to provide all residents with
strategies to combat arson in their neighborhoods.
"Arson is a devastating crime - killing and injuring hundreds of individuals each year," said United States Fire
Administrator Ernie Mitchell. "Arson destroys neighborhoods and shatters lives. I encourage all residents to
team-up with local fire department and law enforcement officials to put an end to arson in their community."
The USFA is partnering with the National Fire Protection Association, Intemational Association of Arson
Investigators, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, National Association of State Fire
Marshals, National Volunteer Fire Council, Coalition Against Insurance Fraud and the Insurance Committee for
Arson Control to announce the 2013 theme.
According to the USFA's National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFJRS) during 2008-2010, an estimated
16,800 intentionally set fires in residential buildings occur annually in the United States. These fires result in an
estimated 280 deaths, 775 injuries, and $593 million in property loss each year. The average dollar loss for an
intentionally set fire in a residential building is $21,320. The fatality rate for intentionally set residential fires
was more than twice that of other residential building fires.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation's (FBI) 2011 Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) statistics showed that 14,717
law enforcement agencies reported 43,412 arsons. Arsons involving single occupancy and other residential
structures accounted for 29.3 percent (12,720) of the total number of arson offenses. Preliminary FBI UCR data
from the first six months of 2012 shows an increase in arson offenses for the first time in six years.
The public can be engaged in Arson Awareness Week by implementing neighborhood clean-ups along with
improving internal and external security for their homes and abandoned properties.