Forensic Fire Investigation

A building that has been the subject of an extensive fire may on first impressions appear to be gutted and have no Forensic value.

However, an examination of the burn patterns inside the property and an assessment of the case circumstances can enable the experienced fire investigators to determine where and how the fire started.

Accelerants such as petrol or white spirit are commonly used to start fires and the finding of such residues in the debris, or multiple seats of fire, can prove that the fire was started deliberately. When a person uses an accelerant to start a fire it is possible that the accelerant may splash or spill onto their clothing.

Clothing items can be examined for residues of an accelerant using sensitive instrumentation. Items of clothing can also be examined for the presence of ‘flash-burning’; microscopic flame damage to fibres that could indicate the wearer had been in contact with a flammable vapour cloud when it was ignited.