CFO and State Fire Marshal Jeff Atwater Recognizes Arson Awareness Week
Contact: Deborah Jamison
TALLAHASSEE—Florida Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jeff Atwater today recognized May 5-11, 2013, as Arson Awareness Week. The theme of the week is Reducing Residential Arson. Last year, the Florida Division of State Fire Marshal investigated 3,720 fires that caused $166 million in damage. More than 1,500 of those fires were classified as arson and caused an estimated $69 million of property damage.
“Floridians lives are put at risk and their property is destroyed senselessly, by this preventable crime,” CFO Atwater said. “By this annual designation, we are focusing public attention on residential arson and working to prevent it through education, public information programs and aggressive investigations.”
Arson Awareness Week is part of a nationwide initiative by the United States Fire Administration (USFA) partnering with the International Association of Arson Investigators; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF); USAonWatch; National Association of State Fire Marshals; National Volunteer Fire Council and the Insurance Committee for Arson Control. The purpose is to educate the public on the important role of community arson awareness and how it can and does play an important role preventing this dangerous crime.
To report arson, call 1-877-No-Arson (1-877-662-7766) or visit http://www.facap.org/ReportArson.cfm
. A reward of up to $5,000 may be paid by the Florida Advisory Committee on Arson Prevention for a tip that leads directly to an arrest and conviction.
Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jeff Atwater, a statewide elected official, oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Atwater’s priorities include fighting financial fraud, abuse and waste in government; reducing government spending and regulatory burdens that chase away businesses; and providing transparency and accountability in spending.