ABAKAN, Russia -- The fire chief of a Siberian village has been arrested for intentionally setting several houses on fire to test his department's response to an emergency.
Arkady Pisarenko, deputy chief of the firefighting service in the region of Khakasia, told RFE/RL on November 7 that Balyksa village department chief Ivan Shnaider had confessed to several counts of arson.
Since Shnaider became the chief of the village fire service in August, six private houses and several other buildings in the village had been set on fire.
Investigators tied Shnaider to the blazes after reviewing security-camera footage.
The police chief explained the actions as an attempt "to check the readiness" of his firefighters to do their jobs.