Fire investigations UK

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Author: Gemma Birbeck

A round-up of this month’s activities

It’s been a busy month for the team at Fire Investigations UK as we’ve continued our support for the fire safety community by sharing our knowledge and expertise via various channels.

First up on 5 August, James Acott delivered a fantastic presentation as part of the Institute of Fire Engineers and Transport Specialist Interest Group (SIG) CPD webinar.

Speaking directly to delegates via MS Teams, he discussed the risks associated with dealing with fires in electric and hybrid vehicles. James was joined by Terrence Short of the City of London who added value with his discussion on fire safety in respect of charging electric vehicles underground.


We’ve also been in the press!


The Ipswich Star covered the devastating news of a mystery fire which broke out at an older gentleman’s home, which FI-UK’s Bob Milne was brought in to investigate. Whilst the cause of the fire remains unknown, Bob worked hard to identity the probable cause.

Quoted in the article, Bob said he’d considered two different ways of the fire starting – one from a naked flame and the other from a smouldering item. Given the timings and witness evidence, the cause of the fire would lend itself to the naked flame hypothesis on the balance of probability. However, he could not rule out other causes because the exact origin of the fire remained unknown.

Our thoughts are with the gentleman’s family.


James Acott and Dr Peter Mansi also featured in Auto Express, speaking directly about the way we analyse the reasons behind vehicle fires.

Here’s a sneak peek at what they said:

“Jealousy attacks are another known cause of car fires. In some instances, the arsonist is only aiming to cause minor damage to the victim’s car by lighting flammable liquid on the paintwork.

All too often though, this will run down under the bonnet and into other areas, causing the whole car to catch fire.”

You can find out more about the investigation process and the most common reasons by picking up a copy of Auto Express


Last but not least, FI-UK’s Dr Peter Mansi was recently appointed on to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Technical Committee, so a huge well done to him!

As a committee member, he delivered an exclusive webinar to the UK Association of Fire Investigators (UK-AFI) on 14 August.

Talking all things NFPA 921: Guide for Fire and Explosion Investigators (2021 Edition), he covered the Evolution of NFPA:921, the key changes that will be included in the forthcoming edition and the due process of how the internationally recognised guidance document is developed following public input.

The webinar was available exclusively to all UK-AFI members at


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