- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 9, 2017

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - New Hampshire fire officials are providing arson prevention tips for houses of worship to coincide with national Arson Awareness Week.

They say entrances should be lit, obstructions that block the view of the building, like shrubbery, should be cleared, and smoke alarms and fire sprinklers should be installed. They also recommend a community arson watch program.

Federal statistics show that there has been an average of 103 arson fires per year at houses of worship reported by federal, state and local agencies. In the United States, between 1996 and 2015, 51 percent of the reported incidents at houses of worship were determined to be caused by arson.

In December, the First Baptist Church in Lebanon was destroyed by arson. Anthony Boisvert has been charged with setting fire to it.

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