Fire Fatality Investigation
Instructor: Tim Yandell
Date: June 26-27, 2019
Time: 8am - 4:30pm
Location: Saginaw Township Fire Department Station 2 - Saginaw, MI
The scene of any fatality fire is itself evidence, and requires two separate but related investigations. The reports and testimony of a trained Fire Investigator, Law Enforcement Officer, Insurance Representative, and DA Investigator concerning observation and findings at a fatality fire scene is vitally important to the successful determination of the fire origin and cause and the victim’s cause of death. Improper protection of the fatality fire scene will result in the unnecessary movement of the body and the loss of physical evidence connected to the investigation.
The First Law Enforcement Officer or Firefighter to arrive at the scene of the fatality fire automatically incurs the serious and critical responsibility of securing the fire scene and must take precautions to protect the body and the scene. The body and the physical evidence in and around the fire scene are highly fragile. Once the body has been moved it can not be returned to its pre-fire position. The movement and improper handling of the fatality fire scene can destroy the indicators needed to determine the cause of death and the cause of the fire. The recommended standards for fatality fire investigations are important to follow.
The proper means of processing a fatality fire scene, photographing, diagramming, and examining the body requires specialized training. However, this is of a nature that is within every investigators ability to acquire. Scientific knowledge is not a prerequisite. What is required in addition to procedural knowledge, is a background on people’s behavior in a fire and what types of information the investigator might obtain from different physical material, victim position, and location.
A competent investigation of a fatality fire scene demands an understanding of basic procedures, and appreciation of the “Why” of certain actions and close attention to detail in carrying them out.
This two (2) day training deals with the considerations, guidelines, and procedures that will help avoid an oversight, insure thoroughness of the fatality fire investigation and to comply with requirements that may bear on the out come of the investigation.
The Purpose Of This Course:
The purpose of this course of training is to provide Fire Investigators, Law Enforcement Officers, Insurance Investigators, and DA Investigators with an in-depth course on the Investigation of Fire Fatalities.
Upon Successful Completion:
Attendees will have been provided the skills and knowledge to:
- Determine The Proper Sequence For Investigating Fatality Fires
- Establish Scene Security And Accountability
- Document The Location of The Fatality
- Explain The Importance of The Fire Victim’s Locations, Position, and Appearance
- Know The Two Types of Investigations Required In A Fatality Fire
- List Methods For Identifying The Victim.
- Fatality cases reviews include vehicle, structure, Incendiary, Electrical, Natural, includes lightning), and Wildland.
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