1. #1
    Junior Member

    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Wichita, KS

    Smile In need of advice...

    I am a 34 year old female that has a dream to be a fire investigator. I have some college under my belt but am not really sure what direction to take at this time. I am not in the fire fighter field and so I am finding it hard to know exactly where to turn. Would anyone be willing to talk with me regarding some questions that I have or have any advice for me? I would greatly appreciate it.

    Bless you all....
    Last edited by lostnfound; 12-09-2002 at 06:47 PM.

  2. #2
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    little south of sanity

    Default lost

    Email me and I will try and help.


  3. #3
    Permanently Removed
    CALFFBOU's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002

    Default Here you go...

    There are some good Arson Investigation links
    on this web page. Also think about talking to
    some insurance companys. They employ and
    train A LOT of investigators.
    Heres your link-


  4. #4
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Dickey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2000


    Most fire investigators, at least in Wisconsin anyway, have some background in fire. Also most investigators have some sort of law enforcement training as well. You have to know the basics of fire behavior and basics of legal issues. Also you have to have good people skills and think like a bad guy as well.

    For example, you have to know your legal issues of when you can be on a fire scene and when you can't. Then you have to understand how fire behaves under different circumstances. You have to know evidence collection procedures and know how to handle evidence. You have to have good people skills and interview skills to know if someone is bullsh*tting you or not. You have to be very organized and on top of things at all times. You have to be willing to drop whatever you are doing at that moment and go investigate a fire. That could be during a family deal on Christmas Eve when it is 20 degrees below zero (wisconsin that is) or while your having a party with friends on July 4th.

    I would say to either join a volunteer fire dept and get involved in investigations that way or to check with insurance companies. Who knows, if you decide to check with a volunteer department, go along with their investigator, you might say whoa, that's not for me. Here in Wisconsin, fire dept. investigators work side by side with law enforcement to gather evidence and interview witnesses and present a case for the DA. Most of our State Fire Marshals are former police officers or transfered into the Fire Marshals' Office from other state law enforcement areas. Insurance companies contract with investigators or have their own to investigate fires to see if they are getting ripped off or not. That might be a place to go too. They will hire you and train you as what they want. A volunteer dept. will do the same thing, usually with a time commitment to them.

    Good luck whatever you do. If you want to talk more about it you can e-mail me.

    Lt.Jason Knecht
    Altoona Fire Rescue
    Altoona, WI

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Flanders, NJ


    Without a background in the fire service, you are a little bit behind the eight-ball, but all is not lost.

    If college is definitely in your long term plans, there is a tremendous demand for qualified engineers. Fire Protection Engineering is a growing field that is in demand in not only the fire investigation field, but also in the research and litigation support field. Univ. of Maryland has a good program.

    Check the website for the International Association of Arson Investigators (www.firearson.com) and the National Association of Fire Investigators (www.nafi.com).

    Good luck with your career.

  6. #6
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2002


    Best advise for getting any Public Safety job is be persistant. Put in apps with anyplace that is accepting them. Look at OPM and see what DOD has open, that can be a good shoe-in.

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