Crime-fighting canines graduate from the State Farm Arson Dog Class #54
When Eve shows up at a fire scene, she gets noticed. It is like a movie or rock star has just walked into the room. All eyes are on her with her golden hair, beautiful brown eyes, and big nose.
Lincoln has the same experience and so does Nancy, Shannon, Hannah, and the other canines trained through the State Farm Arson Dog Program. These crime fighting canines work alongside their human handler to locate potential evidence of arson at a fire scene. Their nose and drive to work are their superpowers, sniffing through debris and burned materials to locate the location of gas or fuel that may have been used to start the fire.
Arson is one of the most difficult crimes to solve. Fire investigators are trained to look for burn patterns and collect evidence when a fire has been suspiciously started. The only problem is our human nose can smell all the burned debris, wet wood, and smoke from the fire but not the drops of fuel that may have been used to accelerate the fire. A dog's sense of smell is estimated to be 10,000 to 100,000 times better than that of a human. An arson dog can work through a fire scene efficiently, smell a drop of gas or fuel amongst all the debris, and differentiate the smell of fuel from all the other odors. Talk about a superpower!
The State Farm Arson Dog program has been helping communities, law enforcement and fire departments across North America since 1993. Over the past 29 years, the program has provided 100% of the funding for the acquisition and training of over 435 accelerant detection canine (ADC) teams throughout the United States and Canada. These teams help law enforcement to efficiently and effectively collect valuable evidence that may be used in the prosecution of an arsonist. They investigate home, business, vehicle, and wildland fires. The dog and training are donated by State Farm to a community so that arson crimes will be investigated, prosecuted, and hopefully, act as a deterrent for fire setters.
State Farm Arson Dog Program Class #54
For the past 29 years, Paul Gallagher and his trainers with Maine Specialty Dogs have been training teams for the State Farm Arson Dog program. This year, 17 law enforcement and fire investigators complete 200 hours training at the New Hampshire Fire Training Academy in Concord with their new canine partner. The intensive training drills take place day, night and weekends but after 4 weeks, they return to their communities as certified accelerant detection canine teams.
2022 Arson Awareness Week
Each year for Arson Awareness Week, the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) gathers and shares information to raise awareness of arson to provide the fire service and community residents with strategies to combat these problems in their community. Arson Awareness Week is held May 1-7, 2022 and the theme this year is “Arson in Homeless Communities: Engagement – Education – Outreach”. For more information, educational materials, and register for a webinar on the topic visit the U.S. Fire Administration website.
For over 100 years, the mission of State Farm has been to help people manage the risks of everyday life, recover from the unexpected and realize their dreams. State Farm and its affiliates are the largest providers of auto and home insurance in the United States. Its more than 19,400 agents and 67,000 employees serve over 91 million policies and accounts – including auto, fire, life, health, commercial policies and financial services accounts. Commercial auto insurance, along with coverage for renters, business owners, boats and motorcycles, is also available. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No. 44 on the 2023 Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit http://www.statefarm.com.