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Honolulu Fire Department welcomes firefighter with superhuman sense of smell

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SARAH DOMAI / SDOMAI@STARADVERTISER.COM

Kukui, an arson dog with the Honolulu Fire Department, can help firefighters detect accelerants at the scene of a fire.

The Honolulu Fire Department introduced a new member of the department today — an arson dog named Kukui.

Kukui and her handler, fire inspector Michael Carter, will help the fire department detect accelerants at the scene of a fire.

Accelerant detection canines have a sense of smell that is 100,000 times better than a human’s and are trained to work a crowd, according to the U.S. Fire Administration.

At the scene of a fire, the dog is encouraged to mingle with spectators, and if an arsonist is in the crowd watching, the dog will be able to pick up the smell of accelerant on his or her clothes or body, the agency said.

The dog can cover an entire scene in 30 minutes, something that can take humans days.

Kukui was donated to HFD by the State Farm Arson Dog program.

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