About Fire Investigations
If a fire cannot be prevented, a clear cause must be determined.
The ability to examine a fire scene and reconstruct the sequence of events that took place is part:
- Skills – used to examine burn patterns and characteristics.
- Science - used to analyze materials that burned or may have failed.
When put together, a clear picture of how a fire started usually begins to take shape. It is the skilled fire investigator that can put these two together to know who, what, how, and when a fire started.
Knowing how a fire started can provide valuable information that can lead to:
- Processes that we use daily
- The public can be educated on how best to prevent similar fires in the future.
- Safer products
- Defective products can be recalled.
- Account for tens of thousands of fires annual
- Intentionally set fires
If arson is suspected, Chesterfield Fire & EMS Fire Marshal's team up with Chesterfield Police Detectives to solve the crime.
Fire Marshal's Investigation Unit - for complex incidents, a specially equipped van, responds to the scene. The equipment contained in this unit can:
- Conduct Field Tests and Sampling
- Collect Evidence
- Document Scene
Central Virginia Arson Task Force - Participating jurisdictions are available to provide support and technical assistance to other member jurisdictions as needed.
If you know of a suspected arson fire in Chesterfield County, email the Fire Life & Safety Division, call 804-748-1426 or contact Chesterfield County / Colonial Heights Crime Solvers.