Yesterday evening, a 12-year old boy from unincorporated Washington County was treated for serious burns at the Legacy Oregon Burn Center after gasoline vapors ignited while he was trying to light some toys on fire. It was the second incident within one hour where a child was burned.
Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue (TVF&R) responded to the medical emergency, and later determined that the boy was trying to light plastic army figures on fire using paper and gasoline. Gasoline and gasoline vapors ignited and caught the boy's clothes on fire.
The gasoline fire was the second incident within one hour involving children and burns. Earlier yesterday evening at 7:00 p.m., TVF&R responded to a home in the Bethany area to find a 15-year old boy suffering from burns to his arms after a fire on the stove. Investigators determined that the boy had been attempting to mix chemicals together to create a large amount of smoke when the chemical brew ignited and burned his arms.
If you suspect that your child may have an unhealthy fascination with fire, juvenile fire setting experts are available around the Portland metro and neighboring areas to provide education, intervention, and mental health referrals to families. See information below.
Washington County Residents
- Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue (TVF&R): Contact TVF&R’s Juvenile Firesetter Intake line at (503) 259-1408. Services include education, intervention, and mental health referrals to any family who has had past or present firesetting behaviors.
Portland Area Residents (including Gresham)
- Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R): Contact PF&R’s Youth Fire Setter Program Manager at (503) 823-3806.
Vancouver Area Residents
- Vancouver Fire Department: Contact the Vancouver Fire Department, Fire Marshal's Office, at (360) 487-7260.
Clackamas County Residents
- Clackamas Fire District #1: Contact the Juvenile Fire Setter Intervention Program, Fire Prevention Division at (503) 742-2660.
Remember, curiosity about fire can be a natural, but dangerous thing. If the fire setting activity seems to be a common occurrence with your child…this is not normal, and help is needed to find out why this is happening. Fire setting activities can be deadly….don’t be afraid to ask for help.