RURAL Arson Control
the following set of questions for the present coding formats:
Has a cause for the fire been determined?
__ or cause code __ If yes, state the cause . __ If no cause has been determined, what is the current status? This change merits consideration by the appropriate NFPA 901 com- mittee and by the NFIC.
Options for firefighter training that will maximize/optimize their effective contribution to arson control.
All of the jurisdictions/agencies contacted referred to improved firefighter training as a factor that could significantly contribute to arson control. All ranked it high. Recent arson control studies suggest that up to three quarters of all firefighters have never received arson control training. A relatively high turnover rate for firefighters is a chronic problem in many volunteer fire departments. Maintaining arson detection skillsamong “back step” firefighters will likely prove a recalcitrant problem. Making such training a part of basic training appears to be the surest means to ensure this training is received.
Topic areas suggested for this training included:
arson recognition preservation of evidence (when and how to secure evidence at the scene and how to meet chain of custody requirements when the evidence has to be moved) motivating firefighters to be concerned with fire cause
Arson Control Expert Concurrence
New York State, Department of State, Office of Fire Prevention and Control offers a training program, “Fire behavior and Arson Awareness,” directed at line firefighters. The course is 12 hours long and is given in the firefighter’s own community. About 12,000 firefighters have been trained since 1979. The Indiana State Fire Marshal’s office has presented a 12-hour “cause and origin” arson detection class to about 7,000 of the state’s firefighters over the past 10 years. This class applies against a training requirement of at least seven hours per year.