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School Fires

Volume 448: debated on Wednesday 28 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) how many (a) fatal and (b) non-fatal injuries resulted from school fires in each year of the last 10 years; (79593)

(2) how many fires there were in (a) primary and (b) secondary schools in each (i) region and (ii) local education authority in each of the last 10 years; and how many were started deliberately.

[holding answer 22 June 2006]: The Department does not collect these statistics, but does have some figures from the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG). The latest figures we have for England and Wales cover 2000-04.

Number of fires

2000

1,275

2001

1,529

2002

1,332

2003

1,313

2004

1,291

The available data cannot differentiate between primary and secondary schools, or between the public and independent sectors. For all the years covered, 61 per cent. of the school fires were considered to be the result of deliberate fire setting.

There have been no fatalities due to school fires in the last 10 years, but school fires resulted in 46 non-fatal casualties in 2002 and 40 in 2003—the latest figures we have from DCLG. Of the 86 people injured in those two years, 54 were over 18 years old, 29 were aged 11-17, two aged between five and 10, and the age of one casualty is unknown.