The Youth Firesetter Intervention, Referral and Education Service (Y-FIRES) evaluates and educates children and youth who have misused, deliberately started, or whose interest in fire is a concern.

If your child has misused fire, deliberately started a fire or if you are concerned about your child’s interest in fire - please call Edmonton Fire Rescue Services’ Fire Prevention Office and ask about Y-FIRES.

Children referred to Y-FIRES attend a single meeting which includes:

  • An interview with both the parent/caregiver and the child/youth
  • An incident overview
  • An educational discussion
  • A video discussion
  • Referral to professional help when necessary

Juvenile Firesetter Intervention Specialists can help youth understand that “playing with” or misusing fire is very dangerous. Deliberate firesetting is a serious matter. Youth who have deliberately started a fire may be indirectly indicating additional, underlying problems. Edmonton Fire Rescue Services can assist with a referral to outside agencies for further assessment when needed.

For Parents/Caregivers

What You Can Do to Help
  • Locate matches and lighters in your home and dispose of them or place them in a secure area. If you don't know where your matches and lighters are, ask your children... they do!
  • If you smoke, keep the lighter with you at all times and dispose of other lighters. This sends a message to your children that you too are taking steps to be fire safe.
  • Talk to your children about what they should do when they find a match or lighter on the street, in a playground or at home. They should be encouraged to report it to an adult they know - a parent/caregiver, teacher or relative. This gives your children the responsibility they need to take the right actions.
  • Test your smoke alarms monthly as a family to ensure they are working.
  • Develop a home fire escape plan and practice it as a family.
  • Perform your own home fire inspection to ensure your home is fire safe.

If you are concerned, contact Edmonton Fire Rescue Services and ask about the Y-FIRES program. A Fire Official will make an appointment to interview your child and discuss fire safety with the family.

Signs That Your Child May Be "Playing With" or Misusing Fire
  • Your child smells of smoke

  • Your child has burned or singed clothing such as pant cuffs or coat cuffs

  • Your child has singed hair, eyebrows or eyelashes

  • You find used matches in the garbage can or toilet

  • You find burned or melted items such as toys, paper or plastic in garbage cans or under furniture

  • Your child has burned fingers or conceals their fingers to hide burned areas