Crime prevention advice


Arson is the crime of setting fire with the intent to cause damage.

Deliberately setting alight to buildings and cars puts people's lives at risk. Although it seems less dangerous, setting fire to rubbish, dumped furniture or recycling bins can spread fire quickly to nearby cars, fencing or roof spaces.

Arson is against the law. Anyone found guilty of setting fires on purpose could face a prison sentence.

The penalties

  • up to 14 years in prison for arson with intent to endanger life
  • up to seven years in prison for arson with intent to cause criminal damage
  • anti-social behaviour orders or community service for deliberate anti-social fire setting that doesn't endanger life or cause criminal damage

The powers we use to deal with arson are:

  • prosecution
  • eviction and termination of tenancy agreements
  • Criminal Behaviour Orders (CBO’s) and acceptable behaviour contracts (ABCs)
  • compulsory counselling for offenders
  • community service orders
  • injunctions

What you can do to help us

  • ensure you dispose of rubbish properly
  • report anybody who is deliberately starting fires
  • arrange for us to collect unwanted furniture, vehicles or fly tipped waste by calling 020 7525 2000

Page last updated: 08 March 2019