Firesetters Integrated Responsive Educational Programme (FIRE-P)

Educational intervention for reducing firesetting

Exploring the benefit of fire education for adults with convictions for deliberate firesetting

The Firesetters' Integrated Responsive Educational Programme (FIRE-P) is a specialist fire safety awareness programme for adults with convictions for deliberate firesetting.

Although fire education with children and young people is a common intervention, to our knowledge FIRE-P is the only example of a structured fire education programme to address adult deliberate firesetting, both in the UK and internationally.

Led by Dr Dominic Pearson, we have worked with Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service to evaluate and develop the programme. We have also now collaborated to roll the programme out nationwide to other Fire and Rescue Services keen to adopt it.

The Firesetters Integrated Responsive Educational Programme

The benefits of the FIRE-P intervention are many and various, and are subject to ongoing research.  

The programme provides fire education to individuals that recognise they have limits in their understanding of fire (including human behaviour around fire). This new knowledge therefore supports improved fire safety behaviour, benefitting the community.

Although people with arson convictions experience difficulties securing housing on release from prison, evidence of progress on FIRE-P is pivotal in successfully re-housing these individuals. By supporting safe housing, the programme also has a positive impact on social inclusion and desistance from offending.

The history of FIRE-P

Aware of the lack of provision for adults with convictions for arson, FIRE-P was first devised in 2008 by Shane Blampied of Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service.

The programme was piloted with a group of prisoners in HMP Winchester, before being designated an Approved Sentencing Option by the local Criminal Justice Board.

Since then, Shane has progressed more than 275 cases, and in 2017 engaged with Dominic to help evaluate and develop the programme.

Research follow-up of the cases has indicated no fire reoffending among those who have completed the programme.

Firesetters' Integrated Responsive Educational Programme (FIRE-P)

Learn more about the Fire Setters' Integrated Responsive Educational Programme (FIRE-P) from programme leader Dr Dominic Pearson.

Dr Dominic Pearson: We did some research a couple of years ago now looking at the Fire Setters' Integrated Responsive Educational Programme, which is a rehabilitation programme run by the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service.

So the people taking part in the programme are deliberate fire setters and the programme looks to see if it can reduce the extent to which those people re-offend.

The research was important because I don't personally believe it's justifiable to stick people in prison and do nothing productive or constructive with them.

With fire setting reoffending, there's no particular programmes that are available for the majority of offenders.

So this programme is now a sentencing option.

55 people a year die from deliberate fire setting, so if we can reduce even one of those, that's an incredible result.

Recent publications

FIRE-P in the news

Our members

Dominic Andrew Stuart Pearson Portrait

Dr Dominic Pearson

Associate Professor in Clinical Research and Practice in Forensic Psychology

Department of Psychology

Faculty of Science and Health

PhD Supervisor

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Thomas Steven Lockhart Portrait

Dr Tom Lockhart

Senior Lecturer

Department of Psychology

Faculty of Science and Health

PhD Supervisor

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