Gloucester County Trains Newest Recruit: Ember The Fire K9

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By: SNJ Today Staff

CLARKSBORO, N.J. — The Gloucester County Office of the Fire Marshal has begun training its newest fire scene canine detective.

Ember, an 11-month-old Red Fox Lab, was donated by K9 Academy Director Joe Nick from the John “Sonny” Burke Police K-9 Academy. The K-9 Academy has been training patrol and scent detection teams for over 25 years.

Ember the Fire K9

“Ember will be another amazing addition to the Fire Marshal’s team,” Freeholder Director Robert M. Damminger said. “Ember is trained daily on over 10 accelerants to ensure she is prepared to find evidence of a suspected arson crime.”

The Fire K9s are officially referred to as accelerant detection canines (ADC).

According to the US Fire Administration ADCs have a sense of smell 100,000 times more acute than a human’s.  They can also covertly sniff out a crowd. “At a fire scene, the dog is encouraged to mingle with spectators and give them a good sniff. If the arsonist is in the crowd watching, the ADC will alert to the smell of the accelerant on his or her clothes, shoes or body,” the US Fire Administration website explains.  The dogs are also cost saving as they can take less time to investigate an area, and they are more accurate than humans.

The accelerants include gasoline, diesel fuel, kerosene, turpentine, butane and various other flammable solvents.

“We are all very proud of the progress Ember has made in training. We can tell she is extremely talented and will be an integral part of the team,” Freeholder Dan Christy, liaison to the Office of the Fire Marshal, said.

For more information from the County Fire Marshal including fire safety tips and fire prevention education, call 856-307-7912 or visit www.gloucestercountynj.gov.



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