Now that you’re in high school, you are quickly learning that you have more freedom to make choices than when you were a kid. What you may not yet realize is that the mistakes you make today will be treated seriously, since you are older and held more accountable for your actions.

For example: If you deliberately set a fire, you could be convicted with arson. People get nervous about sharing their home with an arsonist. Employers feel they can’t trust someone who willfully destroys property by starting fires. While people may have felt sorry for you and your problems when you were a little kid, they won’t be so sympathetic when you burn down a building, now that you are a teenager and supposedly more responsible. Detention centres are not the happiest places to spend your high school years.

The Amherstburg Fire Department is showing grades 9 and 10 students how setting fires can burn a teen’s present and future with its Arson Awareness Program. Two videos totalling 45 minutes show the very real consequences of setting a fire and how arson will impact a student’s life.

The videos also illustrate how quickly fire spreads in a typical house fire. An inside look at the career of a fire fighter with the Town of Amherstburg is also provided.