Jules the Arson DogJules is the newest of five arson investigation dogs at the Office of the State Fire Marshal.  K-9 Officer Terry Ooms is just back from a month of training in Maine.  The dogs are trained to detect accelerants, and their noses are said to be about 200 times as sensitive as a human's. Ooms and Jules demonstrated their skills for reporters Thursday at the Springfield Fire Department training tower.
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“She does carry her Office of the State Fire Marshal badge around her neck. She is a sworn officer with the State Fire Marshal and has the same powers as us as investigators,” says Ooms. Did she swear to an oath? “No, just a paw print on a piece of paper.”  Bloomington-based State Farm Insurance picks up the cost to acquire and train the five dogs, and train the officers, estimated at $25,000. Further costs are no more than what you would encounter as a pet owner. The dogs’ careers are typically five to 10 years.
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