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The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
The role of first respondents in fire investigation
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The role of first respondents in fire investigation

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First respondents play a major role in the identification of cause of fires since they are the first to arrive at incident scenes. this slides examines their role in terms of initial scene assessment, …

First respondents play a major role in the identification of cause of fires since they are the first to arrive at incident scenes. this slides examines their role in terms of initial scene assessment, evidence identification, evidence preservation, witness handling and overhauling

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Transcript

  • 1. ADO II KPAJAL DANIEL @ A ONE DAY WORKSHOP FOR OPERATION AND DUTY OFFICERS
  • 2. Introduction objectives Pre-fire fighting assessment Evidence identification Preservation of evidence Witnesses Summary
  • 3. The Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) is the sole agency mandated by law to prevent, combat and establish the cause of fires in the country. Unfortunately, very little training and logistics are assigned for fire investigation purposes. Consequently, the Service has come under incessant criticism for its failure to effectively investigate and establish the cause of major fires in the country. The problem in the Brong Ahafo Region is not any different
  • 4. At the end of this presentation, course participants will be able to: Appreciate their role in the fire investigation process Effectively conduct a pre-fire fighting incident assessment Identify evidence and learn ways of protecting them Improve upon their witness handling skills
  • 5. On arrival at an incident scene, the Incident Commander (Duty Officer) must quickly conduct an assessment of the incident by doing the following: Find out if there are trap victims Size-up the incident Observe the wind direction Identify hazards Read fire behavior indicators
  • 6. Assess forcible entry requirements Examine the roofing type Understand crew’s tactical assignment Identify potential emergency escape routes Maintain high level of situation awareness Verify that communication gadgets are working
  • 7. If door to fire area must be opened, all members should stay low and to one side of doorway Check door for heat before opening Start fire fighting from unaffected areas to prevent the fire from spreading to such areas. Avoid multiple commands and instructions
  • 8. Evidence at a fire scene relates to both material and non material elements that aids in the fire investigation process or the establishment of cause and motive of a fire. It may include such things as petrol cans, matches box, streamers, movements of people, etc Fire respondents play a very significant role in evidence identification and destruction To aid the investigation process, first respondents must
  • 9. First respondents must note the Time of day Weather and natural hazards Barriers People leaving the scene
  • 10. First-Arriving Firefighters should note the Time of arrival and extent of fire Wind direction and velocity Doors or windows locked or unlocked Location of the fire Vehicles and people present in the area Status of doors and windows Smoke color
  • 11. Evidence of forced entry by anyone other than firefighters Contents of the rooms Indications of unusual fire behavior or more than one point of origin  Containers or cans  Burglary tools  Familiar faces
  • 12. Unusual odors Abnormal behavior of fire when water is applied Obstacles hindering fire fighting Incendiary devices Trailers Structural alterations Fire patterns
  • 13. Heat intensity Availability of documents Fire detection and protection systems Intrusion alarms Location of fire
  • 14. Fire suppression activities, such as a straight stream applied at the point of origin or deluge applications that may wash away or dilute potential evidence. Overhaul activities that destroy fire patterns. Salvage activities that involve moving or removing potential physical evidence. Use of a tool in any manner that causes destruction of evidence.  Movement of knobs, switches, and controls on appliances and utilities. Weather conditions that affect transient evidence (i.e., wind, precipitation, or temperature changes).
  • 15. Personnel walking through the scene. Witnesses and victims leaving the scene. Medical intervention and treatment of victims (e.g., by damaging evidence at the scene or destroying victims’ clothing). Premature removal or movement of bodies. Vehicles at the scene (e.g., that introduce fluid to the scene through vehicle leaks or destroy other evidence, including shoe prints and tire impressions). Contamination from external sources, such as fuelpowered tools or equipment.
  • 16. Evidence must remain undisturbed except when absolutely necessary for the extinguishment of the fire Remove evidence at risk of imminent destruction by the fire or the structural collapse of the damaged building. Limit excessive fire suppression, overhaul, and salvage. Avoid needless destruction of property.
  • 17. Firefighters must avoid trampling over possible evidence and obliterating it Preserving transient evidence (e.g., trace evidence, shoe prints, tire impressions). Leave charred documents found in containers Leaving bodies undisturbed. Flag items of evidence with cones or markers. Record observations through written notes or voice recordings.
  • 18. Retain and secure clothing items removed from victims and suspects. Obtain information about victims and witnesses (i.e., their names, addresses, and telephone numbers). Ensure that later arriving investigators are fully apprised of the evidence discovered. Cover items or areas containing evidence with objects that will not contaminate the evidence (e.g., clean boxes or tarpaulins). Isolate items or areas containing evidence with rope, barrier tape, barricades, or sentries.
  • 19. Witnesses are primary source of information and their accounts are key to the investigation process Firefighters should obtain as much information as possible from them Owners or occupants of the property should be allowed to talk freely However, Firefighters should not attempt to interrogate a potential arson suspect unless trained and authorized Firefighters should refrain from expressing personal opinions
  • 20. Overhauling consists of operations involved in searching for and extinguishing hidden or remaining fires at an incident. If possible, do not start overhaul operations until Fire is under control Fire cause has been determined Evidence has been identified and protected
  • 21. Before overhauling, the following steps must be followed Inspect the premises Identify hazards Developing operational plan Eliminating or mitigating hazards  Providing tools and equipment
  • 22. Indicators of Loss of Structural Integrity during overhauling include: Weakened floors Concrete that has spalled Weakened steel roof members Walls offset Weakened roof trusses Mortar in wall joints opened Water pooled on upper floors
  • 23. Before an investigation into the origin and cause of a fire can be conducted, there must be evidence to evaluate and first respondents play a critical role in its collection. As a firefighter, one of the most important responsibilities is to avoid disturbing or destroying evidence while fighting the fire. In the area of origin appropriate caution must be used when spraying water, moving debris, and even walking around. Once the area of origin is known, a more thorough investigation can be conducted to determine the exact cause of the fire.
  • 24. As a firefighter, it may be necessary to determine the cause of the fire; more likely, firefighters may be assigned to assist their supervisor or a fire investigator in making that determination. If the fire origin and cause investigation reveals evidence of arson, the property becomes a crime scene and must be treated as one. Firefighters must cooperate fully with whoever is assigned to investigate the crime.

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