Deliberate Fires – 15126

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A request asking for information on the ignition of deliberate fires between 2005 and 2015.

Ref: FOI/15126

RE: FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000 REQUEST

I am writing to confirm that the West Midlands Fire Service has now completed its search for the information you requested on 4th October 2015

Please find below a summary of our findings.

Request

  1. I would like to know the total number of fires recorded by your fire service in each separate calendar year from 2005-2014.
  2. I would like to know, in each separate calendar year from 2005-2014, how many fires recorded by your fire service were listed as the source/ignition/cause being a ‘bomb’.
  3. I would like to know, each separate calendar year from 2005-2014, how many fires recorded by your fire service were listed as the source/ignition/cause being ‘deliberate ignition’, ‘arson’, ‘material and fire source brought together deliberately/intentionally’, or anything with the same meaning.

For all three requests I would also like to know how many fires in each three category were recorded for the first six months of 2015 (January 1-June 30)

Reply

This information is exempt under section 21 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 as this information is reasonably accessible to the requestor. Information concerning the source of fires is published by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/fire-statistics-great-britain

From 2009 onwards the DCLG made the decision not to put information concerning the cause of ignition to deliberate fires into the public domain due to the effect that this may have on public confidence and this information may cause alarm and panic within communities. This is covered by Section 44 of the Freedom of Information Act as this information would be incompatible with our community obligation to make West Midlands safer. This is an absolute exemption and does not require a public interest test.

If you have any queries about this letter, please contact me. Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications. If you are unhappy with the service you have received in relation to your request and wish to make a complaint or request a review of our decision please write to The Public Relations Department, West Midlands Fire Service, 99 Vauxhall Road, Birmingham, B7 4HW

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