Arson prevention projects should focus on identifying and removing what could burn or materials that an arsonist could use to start a fire5:
- Clean up the neighborhood by removing all garbage, material, and excess vegetation that is capable of being ignited.
- Remove all possible sources of ignition such as flammable liquids and unused gas containers.
- Remove abandoned vehicles. Most car fires are started to cover up other criminal activity or simply as an act of vandalism. An abandoned car is a target for arson.
- Secure abandoned and vacant homes which are potential arson targets. This may be comprised of additional locks or the boarding up of broken windows or other openings with plywood.
- Communicate with the owner that authorities are concerned about the vacant home and explain why.
- Encourage the fire department to conduct frequent fire code inspections.
- Contact public works to disconnect all utilities at the street. This includes natural gas, water, and electricity. If there are liquefied petroleum gas tanks, they should be disconnected and removed.
- Encourage Neighborhood Watch members to patrol these areas and write down descriptions, license plates of suspicious vehicles, and potential suspect descriptions.