A quick way to reach the Investigation division, is by sending an email to osfminv@ks.gov
Arson Hotline

Investigation

The Fire Investigation Division is charged with determining the origin and cause of fires throughout the State.  Fire investigators also serve as instructors for local fire departments and law enforcement agencies, collect evidence at fire scenes, collaborate with other state and federal agencies, conduct criminal investigations and provide public education.

Most Kansas fire departments and law enforcement agencies do not have a certified fire investigator on staff, and they will request our assistance when they suspect a fire had an incendiary cause, when fatality or serious injury occurs, and when property damage is severe.

When a determination is made that a fire was caused by arson, a careful and complete investigation will follow. In cooperation with local law enforcement officials and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, our investigators will completely evaluate the fire scene for evidence and conduct interviews.

Arson is a complex crime, sometimes committed as part of an insurance fraud; sometimes committed to conceal other crimes such as burglary, embezzlement or even homicide.

Fire Investigators with the OSFM are sworn law enforcement officers and carry out all aspects of criminal investigations, including the arrest and conviction of arsonists. The Investigation Division conducts polygraph examinations in relation to these criminal investigations.

The Investigation Division maintains investigative files and databases for investigations and both explosive and fireworks licensing. The division utilizes the NCIC system for background checks on all explosive and fireworks licensing applications. The Investigation Division works and cooperates with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE) and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) in reference to investigations, data sharing, and licensing.

Fire Investigations

The Investigation Division provides experienced fire investigators to assist local fire departments and law enforcement agencies in the investigation of fires and explosions. This assistance is provided when a request is made by the local jurisdiction. Our fire investigators conduct criminal investigations when the incident is determined to be criminal in nature, such as arson.

This team also certifies fire investigators for local fire departments. This certification allows investigators to have law enforcement authority when conducting fire investigations. There are currently two certification levels: CFI I and CFI II.

Explosives and Fireworks

The Investigation Division deals with explosive and fireworks permits for the State of Kansas. Fire investigators are assigned to conducting storage site inspections and complaint-driven civil and criminal investigations. The investigators respond to pre- and post-blast incidents. Explosive safety, awareness, and investigative classes are conducted for both the public safety community and the private explosive industry.

Investigation News

Fireworks Facts for the Fourth

OSFM | Jun 24, 2015

State sale of consumer fireworks is from June 27th and ends July 5th.  Check your local area, as they may reduce the sale dates.

The State does not regulate when a person can shoot off consumer fireworks but again check your local area, as they may restrict the dates and times you can shoot them off.

Sky Lanterns are not a classified as a firework and does not fall under the firework regulations.

There is NO state ban on sky lanterns but you need to check with your local jurisdictions to see if they are banned in your area.

sky lanterns

Novelty items are not regulated as fireworks so they are not held to the sale dates restrictions.

* 3.2 Novelties The following devices do not require approval from DOT and are not regulated as explosives under the provisions of this Standard, provided that they are manufactured and packaged as described below. Any devices not complying with the requirements set forth in this section require approval from DOT, and are classed as Fireworks l.4G and described as Fireworks, UN0336 unless they are classed as l.4S or not regulated as hazardous materials based on examination and testing as specified in Title 49 CFR, § 173.56. Devices described in this section which are not regulated as explosives are not considered to be consumer fireworks; however, these devices must still comply with all labeling requirements of CPSC applicable to consumer fireworks devices. Novelties must be packaged in strong outer packagings that are sealed to prevent leakage of the contents. Each package, and overpack if used, offered for surface transportation must be plainly marked NOVELTIES, NOT REGULATED, EXCEPT WHEN TRANSPORTED BY AIR, IN CONFORMANCE WITH APA STANDARD 87-1. If novelties are transported by aircraft, they must be classed, labeled, and described as Flammable Solid, Inorganic, n.o.s (Novelties), UN3178.

party poppers
* 3.2.1 Party Popper Small devices with paper or plastic exteriors that are actuated by means of friction (a string or trigger is typically pulled to actuate the device.) They frequently resemble champagne bottles or toy pistols in shape. Upon activation, the device expels flame-resistant paper streamers, confetti, or other novelties and produces a sman report. Devices may contain not more than 16 mg <0.25 grains) of explosive composition, which is limited to potassium chlorate and red phosphorus. These devices must be packaged in an inner packaging which contains a maximum of 72 devices.

snapper fireworks
* 3.2.2 Snapper Small, paper-wrapped devices containing not more than 1.0 mg of silver fulminate coated on sman bits of sand or gravel. When dropped, the device explodes, producing a small report. Snappers must be in inner packages not to exceed 50 devices each, and the inner packages must contain sawdust or a similar, impact-absorbing material.

smoke balls
* 3.2.3 Toy Smoke Devices Small devices consisting of cork-like spheres, or cardboard or plastic tubes, containing not more than 5 g of pyrotechnic composition that produces a small cloud of smoke after activation. The devices are typically ignited by means of safety fuse. The outer configuration is usually a sphere (smoke ball), cylindrical tube, or paper cone. The chemical composition for white smoke consists of potassium nitrate and sulfur, while colored smokes are produced by mixtures consisting of potassium chlorate, sulfur or sugar, and a sublimable organic dye. Mixtures containing potassium chlorate must also contain a neutralizer/coolant such as sodium bicarbonate.

To be eligible for not regulated status, these devices must produce smoke as their sole pyrotechnic effect following ignition, and must be packaged in inner units containing a maximum of 72 devices.

glow worms
* 3.2.4 Snakes, Glow Worms Pressed pellets of pyrotechnic composition that contain 2 g or less of composition per article. Upon burning, they produce a APA STANDARD 87-1 snake-like ash that expands in length as the pellet burns. Chemical compositions vary, but typically contain ammonium perchlorate, nitrated pitch, asphaltum, and similar carbonaceous materials. These devices are limited to a maximum of 25 pellets per inner package in order to be transported as not regulated devices.

sparklers
* 3.2.5 Wire Sparklers, Dipped Sticks These devices consist of a metal wire or wood dowel that has been coated with pyrotechnic composition. Upon ignition of the tip of the device, a shower of sparks is produced. Sparklers may contain up to 100 g of composition per item. Sparklers typically use barium nitrate as the oxidizer, with aluminum and dextrine as fuels. Iron filings produce the spark effect. Color-producing sparklers use potassium perchlorate as an oxidizer. Any sparkler containing a chlorate or perchlorate oxidizer is limited to a maximum of 5 g of composition per article. Sparklers must be packaged in inner packagings that contain 8 devices or less to be transported as not regulated devices.