Fire Investigators, employees of PFRES have complete authority to enforce state and local laws related to arson and environmental crimes. They are sworn law enforcement officers who have completed Virginia Fire Marshal Academy's Fire Investigator certification and Law Enforcement certification. Fire Investigators are required to determine the cause and origin of all fires that take place in the city. They also investigate and prosecute arson, bombings and environmental cases within the courts.
Fire Inspectors receive rigorous training in building construction, fire protection systems, alarm systems, building construction codes and state and local law related to fire safety code compliance while attending Virginia Fire Marshal Academy Inspector certification. Inspectors visit businesses, schools, hotels, medical facilities and industrial facilities on an annual basis to ensure that protective safety systems such as fire alarm systems and portable extinguishers are in place and prepared to keep citizens safe.
PIER officers provide public fire and life safety education to citizens of all ages. They work closely with schools and other organizations to start this education as early as practical and continue with programs targeted to adults and elder citizens. PIER officers also create relationships with businesses, citizen groups and government agencies to maximize use of time and fiscal resources and to increase the reach of educational programs. Finally, the department Public Information Officer ensures that media outlets and our citizens are made aware of issues affecting public safety as well as important events happening within the department.