Arson/Explosion Investigation Unit

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Fire, Arson, and Explosion Investigation

The Fire/Arson Investigation Unit of the Rutherford County Fire Rescue Department is tasked with investigating all fire and explosion incidents throughout Rutherford County. The Department aggressively investigates all fires in order to focus fire prevention and public education efforts and combat the crime of arson. Rutherford County Fire/Arson Investigators have police powers, make arrests, and conduct criminal investigations in cases of arson, the criminal use of explosives, and other fire related crimes.

Rutherford County Investigators receive extensive training including, but not limited to: fire origin and cause determination, explosion and post-blast investigations, interviewing and interrogation, evidence collection, firearms and defensive tactics, arrest procedures, and criminal investigations.  Investigators conduct criminal investigations on all incidents with suspicious or illegal fire–related activity.  Rutherford County Investigators receive certification through the State of Tennessee, the International Association of Arson Investigators, or the National Association of Fire Investigators. Investigators are also authorized to issue citations for fire-related offenses within the State of Tennessee.

The Fire/Arson Investigation Unit works closely with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies such as the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office (RCSO), the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI), and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE).


Photo of arson evidence.


The crime of arson is one of the most costly human-made disasters. Arson indirectly contributes to increased insurance premiums, higher medical costs, lost jobs, lost income, and the increased cost of fire services. The Rutherford County Fire Rescue Department needs your help to combat this serious crime. You can contact the Division of Fire Prevention directly with information related to a suspicious fire incident by calling 615-907-3600 or via email at [email protected]

“BURN AN ARSONIST!” Contact the Tennessee Arson Hotline to report information on an arson. Information that leads to the successful arrest and conviction of an arsonist can result in a reward of up to $5,000.