HONOLULU (KHON2) — Officials have a highly complex investigation ahead of them after Wednesday’s deadly ambulance fire in Kailua.

“The fire is your enemy and putting out the fire is your enemy,” said John McCarthy, former Honolulu Police Department Deputy Chief.

Check out more news from around Hawaii

McCarthy, who also was the head of HPD’s arson unit at one point said, there’s no piece of the scene that goes unturned.

“They’ll go through every bit that’s left there. Every ash, every cinder, every piece of the ambulance that is left looking for evidence to find out what went on,” McCarthy said.

Putting the pieces together won’t happen overnight.

“This isn’t CSI, it doesn’t happen in an hour. The investigators have to go through what they have there, what evidence they have, they have to preserve what they have. There’s a scientific composition to this where the lab has to look at things and try to make determinations,” said McCarthy.

McCarthy said these investigations are highly specialized and that’s where other agencies can offer help. The Honolulu Fire Department is the lead agency right now, but calls are being made on the federal level.

“This morning we’re in contact with the National Traffic Safety Administration as well as ATF and we’re making all records available to these agencies, because I want answers,” said Dr. Jim Ireland, Honolulu Emergency Medical Services Director. “We want answers.”

ATF told KHON2 they have been in contact with HFD since Wednesday evening. ATF is ready with resources both on-island and from the mainland, that includes its fire research lab in Maryland.

As the investigation gets underway, officials are waiting for answers.

“I think there’s valuable learning in an incident like this that we will be able to use going forward, working as part of our safety culture in preventing future incidences if possible,” said Speedy Bailey, AMR Regional Director Hawaii.

Get news on the go with KHON 2GO, KHON’s morning podcast, every morning at 8

“So we’re going to wait and let the professionals investigate this, but we’re just as eager for answers as everyone else,” said Dr. Ireland.