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New Fire Investigation Apparatus Unveiled
Fire Investigation Unit increasing arson-related arrests in City
Mayor Brown and Buffalo Fire Commissioner Michael Lombardo today officially opened the Department’s new Fire Investigation unit offices at the Engine 2 Firehouse.
Included in the event was the introduction of a new Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives (CBRNE) Vehicle, purchased with federal Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) funds. The new, 2008 Ford F 550 vehicle cost $150,000.
“We continue to add resources and updated technology to assist the Buffalo Fire Department personnel in their fire prevention and fire investigation efforts,” said Mayor Brown. “The strengthening of the Department’s Fire Investigation Unit is critically important as we work to assess quickly the cause and nature of fire events and determine their origin.”
Already this year, the Fire Investigation Unit’s investigations have led to 112 arson-related arrests, which is a 60% increase over 72 arrests made in 2006.
“This Unit continues to expand its capabilities and enhance its investigatory skills through highly specialized training,” said Commissioner Lombardo. “Working closely with the Buffalo Police Department, suburban law enforcement agencies, the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, our well-trained Fire Investigation Unit personnel are demonstrating daily their ability to determine the cause and nature of fire events in Buffalo.”
The 9-member Fire Investigation Unit will now be housed in the Engine 2 Firehouse at the corner of Elmwood Avenue and Virginia Street. The Unit also has a yellow/chocolate mix Labrador Retriever that is an Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives-trained fire accelerant detection canine. He was acquired through the ATF to help the City of Buffalo with arson investigations and joined the Unit in January 2007.
The new CBRNE specialized vehicle will be used by the Fire Investigation Unit in the processing and investigation of fire and explosion scenes (involving fire fatalities), suspicious fire related injuries, weapons of mass destruction, post blast investigations and other critical cases occurring in and around the City of Buffalo.
In addition, Geico presented the Fire Investigation Unit with a new vehicle that will used to travel to various fire investigation scenes. The new vehicle will be utilized for the Unit’s canine fire investigation activities.
© 2001-2011 City of Buffalo
Photos by Angel Art LTP, compliments of the Greater Buffalo Convention and Visitors Bureau. Additional photos by Adrian Roselli, compliments of Algonquin Studios