Browndale Fire Company
Fire Station 43
Standard Operating Guideline
Date of Issue: 1-1-98
Effective Date: 1-31-98
Developed By: Earl Obelenus
Issued by Authority of: Earl Obelenus, Fire Chief
FIREFIGHTER/FIRE OFFICER’S RESPONSIBILITIES
FOR ARSON DETECTION
To establish responsibilities for the detection
Fireground officers are responsible to see that
evidence is preserved at the scene of any incident. Firefighters
under the direction of fire officers must perform their duties but, must
be aware of the importance n the detection of arson at an incident.
All fireground officers and firefighters.
Arson is one of America’s fastest growing crimes.
He vast destruction of property, termination of life and the endless suffering
are all part of the arson problem. To curtail this crime, the arson investigator
requires all pertinent information from the receipt of the alarm to the
extinguishment of the fire. This guideline will assist in providing information
which may lead to the conviction of an arsonist.
1. As a firefighter/fire officer en-route to an
alarm all senses should be sharpened on approaching a fire scene, making
a mental note of the weather conditions, persons or vehicles in the area,
color of smoke, as well as the amount of smoke and general location of
the fire upon arrival.
2. Once in operation on the fireground, the firefighter/fire
officer should note the spread of the fire, if here are multiple fire locations
and positions of doors and windows, noting which required forcible entry
and which were opened.
3. The firefighter/fire officer should be aware
of the strong odor such as hydrocarbons or polar solvents which would not
ordinarily be present.
4. The firefighter/fire officer should note any
suspicious persons, who may be familiar at multiple fire scenes, persons
overly willing to assist or willing to offer information about the incident.
The firefighter/fire officer should immediately report this information
to the IC .
5. If the fire is of suspicious origin, the fire
officer shall provide security to the structure and/or vehicle and notify
the Pennsylvania State Police Fire Marshall and the Browndale Fire Company
Fire Marshall for further investigation. This will include all fires in
which there are any serious injuries, fatalities or large dollar values.
6. Overhaul operations, only essential to prevent
additional fire spread will be performed. DO NOT DISTURB the potential
7. Upon return to the station, written documentation
of the events that transpired will be initiated and completed for future
reference. The reports will be compiled by the BFC Fire Marshall and kept
on record until needed or deemed unnecessary by the investigating department.
8. NO information as to the suspected cause of
the fire or other information relative to the incident will be released
by department personnel except information that is requested by the IC
or PSP Fire Marshall. Any release of information to the media will be by
the IC or his representative.
VI. SUPERSEDED GUIDELINE
This is a new guideline on this subject matter.
It does not supersede any previous memo or guideline.