The cause of the Friday, Feb. 14, 2020, fire in the 200 block of 9 ½ Avenue W. has been ruled accidental due to a juvenile playing with a lighter. The West Fargo Fire Department will be working with the family as part of the youth firesetters program to address this incident. The program is designed to understand they reasons the incident may have occurred and teach preventative measures to ensure it doesn’t happen again.
Youth firesetting is a common, dangerous problem. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, fires started by children between 2005 and 2009 accounted for 56,300 fires with 110 civilian deaths, 880 civilian injuries and $286 million in property damage. Younger children are more likely to set fires inside the home, with many fires involving a child playing with a lighter in their bedroom.