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Mr Kim Yates – RIP

It is with tremendous sadness that I have to report our friend, colleague, FI Global Associate and IAAI President of the IAAI-Africa Chapter Mr Kim Yates was tragically killed with his wife and best friend Ingrid in a motorcycle accident in South Africa. Our thoughts go out to his other best friend and business partner Andre de Beer and Kim’s family and friends. We are all devastated.

ISO 9001:2008 Inspection 2015 – Another Successful year!

FI-UK passed the 4th ISO 9001 inspection by BSI today with very positive comments from the Inspector. Maintaining excellent background organisational structures to support our every growing client base to provide outstanding service delivery. We have already booked in next year’s appointment and aim to maintain these high standards.

IAAI ITC – Chicago May 2015!

Another fantastic International Training Conference was held by the IAAI – ‘Global Leaders in Fire Investigation’. Representing the UK Association of Fire Investigators (UK AFI), the IAAI’s 67th Chapter, were FI-UK’s Dr Peter Mansi (UK AFI Past President), John Galvin (UK AFI President), Claire Mansi (UK AFI Director of Administration) and Chris Clarke (UK AFI Director of the Board) and Hawkins very own Dr Nick Carey (UK AFI 1st Vice President). Visit www.firearson.com for further information. Congratulations from the UK go to the new President, Mr Dan Heenan of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

IAAI Presidential Year comes to an end

FI-UK Partner, Dr Peter Mansi, will hand over the reigns of the IAAI Presidency to Dan Heenan, Senior Special Agent with the ATF, (US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) in Chicago on Tuesday 19 May 2015. Peter has visited and presented at 16 IAAI Chapter events in the USA, Africa, Finland, Ireland and of course, the UK and also represented the IAAI in Dubai, Germany and Denmark. He stated ‘The best part of my Presidency was meeting our IAAI members from around the world’.

BBC Watch Dog and FI-UK ‘Team Up’ at BRE

BBC Watch Dog’s ‘Hazard House’ teamed up with Fire Investigations UK and BRE during Series 10 to inform the public about dangers relating to dishwashers. You can see the complete episode at

https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b03ycqxm/Watchdog_Test_House_Episode_10/  Other episodes of this excellent series can also be seen on BBC iPlayer.

BRE’s superb facilities at Garston, Hertfordshire can also be seen. You will see why you should engage FI-UK to conduct your fire investigations!

Fire Investigations UK comment on intelligence led forensic intelligence

Intelligence led policing with SELFIA
SLTN Analytics is specialized in building unified search solutions for forensic investigations. SLTN is based in the Netherlands and has designed and implemented search platforms to enable intelligence led policing for national, European, and international organisations. The leading application of SLTN Analytics is SELFIA. ( SLTN’s EntityLed Forensic Intelligence Application).

“This Application really has the wow factor and provides amazing insights by correlating entities that are hidden in traditional systems. This application can answer the questions and visualise what a CIS needs to know.” Mr Robert Milne, the former Head of Forensic Intelligence, New Scotland Yard, in the London Metropolitan Police Intelligence Bureau and author of the book: Forensic analytics.

https://www.forensicanalytics.eu/selfia/

 

Fire Investigations UK gets Forensic Science Society approval

We are pleased to report that our course Electricity for Fire Investigationshas been approved by the Forensic Science Society.  The two day course is the first and only course dedicated to electrical investigation to be approved by the FSSoc.

The approval period will commence on 19th April 2013 and conclude on 18th April 2014.

We are now permitted to use the Forensic Science Society’s Logo on this course for marketing purposes.

Contact admin@fireinvestigationsuk.com for course content and pricing details.

 

New sponsorship for fire investigation partnership

BRE Global and Fire Investigations UK (FI UK) have become the lead sponsors of the Chartered Institute of Loss Adjustors (CILA) ‘Business Interruption’ Special Interest Group.

Businesses lose millions of pounds annually because of interruption to trading caused by fire. The Business Interruption Special Interest Group is one of 11 created by CILA to provide access for their members to those who have expertise in one of a number of special claims areas. Investigators from BRE Global and FI UK provide independent, impartial and technically robust services to CILA members in investigating fires on behalf of insurers and policyholders.

The fire investigation partnership has a team of very well qualified fire investigators to help establish the origin and cause of a fire and the reason for fire development which, as appropriate, can be supported by, reconstructions, fire modelling, fire testing and expert witnesses.

As well as fire investigations, the BRE Group (incorporating BRE Global) can draw on expertise developed from working with the built environment for over 90 years to help with a number of different areas including construction and building investigations.

For more details about the sponsorship please contact Helen Ball: ballh@bre.co.uk.

The BRE Global FI UK partnership provides a 24/7 response to incidents with investigators able to conduct a full and thorough investigation into any fire involving buildings, infrastructure, vehicles or vessels in order to assist with claims.
www.bre.co.uk/investigations
www.fireinvestigationsuk.com

The majority of CILA members are employed by Loss Adjusting companies. Chartered Loss Adjusters are independent claims specialists who operate under a Royal Charter to investigate, negotiate and agree on the conclusion of insurance and other claims on behalf of insurers and policyholders.
www.cila.co.uk

Fire Investigations (UK) support the UK Association of Fire Investigators

Fire Investigations (UK) are helping support the newly branded UK Association of Fire Investigators  (previously the IAAI-UK). They are sponsoring the UK-AFI product recall web page which gets thousands of hits per month from all over the world.

The main objectives of the UK-AFI are: The preservation of life and property and prevention of crime for the public benefit, in particular by:
  1. Developing and maintaining good practice in the investigation of fire and arson by ensuring the highest professional standards of competence;
  2. Developing technical knowledge in fire and arson investigation techniques and procedures and making that knowledge available to professionals, service providers and the public.

 

Fire Investigations-UK Management systems tested and approved

Fire Investigations(UK) LLP is pleased to announce that it is now certified by BSI and meets the ISO 9001:2008 standard.  This means that the organisation takes a common-sense and disciplined approach to its services and their delivery. It ensures that we have clear business objectives and a quality management system in place that delivers those objectives reliably and efficiently, day in, day out.

ISO 9001 ensures business and health and safety risks are minimised and saves money through service efficiencies and a ‘right first time’ approach.

 

An external energy source was the cause for the GALAXY SIII that appeared to have heat-related damage

An external energy source was the cause for the GALAXY SIII that appeared to have heat-related damage

Samsung contracted Fire Investigations UK (FIUK), an independent third-party organization, to determine the exact cause of the damage inflicted on a GALAXY SIII unit, which had allegedly been affected by heat.

The damaged device and additionally provided devices were examined and exposed to a series of tests. The investigation summary states that “The energy source responsible for generating the heat has been determined as external to the device” and “the device was not responsible for the cause of the fire.”

Additionally, the investigation results state, “The only way it was possible to produce damage similar to the damage recorded within the owner’s damaged device was to place the devices or component parts within a domestic microwave.”

The device user in Ireland has posted on “Boards.ie” admitting that he was responsible for the damage.

Link

 

The pop star Duffy fled a fire that destroyed a luxury penthouse flat

The pop star Duffy fled a fire that destroyed a luxury penthouse flat in London last night.

The ‘Smoke Without Fire’ Welsh singer was seen calling for her cat outside the 10-storey block near High Street Kensington.

She found the pet sheltering under a van, said www.standard.co.uk.

The site reported that more than 60 firefighters tackled the fire in St Mary Abbot’s Terrace for more than six hours at the rented £12m 6,000 sq ft loft apartment, with its own pool and cinema.

About 20 other residents spent the night at a centre nearby. Duffy, a Grammy-winning 28-year-old whose full name is Aimée Ann Duffy, left before 10 pm.

Nic Myatt, of London Fire and Rescue, said an investigation was continuing into the cause of the fire.

Rassa Borghei, 58. who lives on the fifth floor, told the Evening Standard: “I went to the kitchen window and I saw a lot of smoke. I told my sister and my son, let’s leave.

“I saw Duffy running outside. She was running about all over the place. When the police arrived they calmed her.”

It is believed Duffy was due to leave the penthouse, managed by estate agents Knight Frank and Sotheby’s, in a matter of days.

It was announced in February last year that was taking a break from recording.

Duffy was in a relationship with Welsh rugby player Mike Phillips until May last year and has been in a contract dispute with her former manager Angela Becker.

 

High Court supports UK distribution network operators following test case

In an industry test case concerning five electrical fires dating back to 2004 and affecting various domestic and commercial properties the Technology and Construction Court of the High Court of Justice has decided in favour of UK Power Networks (as the concerned Distribution Network Operator) that it was not liable to the claimant property owners for the resulting loss and damage.

All five instances involved fires that were traced to cut out fuse assemblies forming the last component of the electrical supply equipment coming into the claimants’ premises for which UK Power Networks was responsible.

In all five cases the Court rejected the claimants’ arguments that the fires could have been prevented by an enhanced regime of routine preventative inspection and maintenance of such cut outs and endorsed that there was in place a good reactive regime to respond to any matters of concern.

 

 

 

 

UK house fire figures could be double official statistics

New research suggests that the amount of UK house fires could be double offical government statistics.
Stone Wool insulation provider Rockwool has found only half of all UK house fires were attended by fire brigades in the last five years.

The rest of the blazes were dealt with by homeowners themselves and their neighbours.

Official statistics only record incidents attended by fire brigades, of which there were 45,000 in 2010-11 according to the Department for Communities and Local Government.

Rockwool’s findings thus put the true figure at 90,000 house fires a year.

“Fires cause significant damage to buildings across the country and resulted in 268 deaths between 2010 – 2011, so reducing fire risk should be an important consideration for homeowners,” said Paula Bateman, Corporate Affairs Director, Rockwool UK.

If accurate, the research suggests that UK fire protection guidelines and building regulations are based on only a partial picture of the fire risk facing homes.

FI UK offer a new service to clients, Forensic Laser Scanning

Providing a service to investigative organisations, law enforcement agencies and consulting professionals, Fire Investigations (UK) has a team with many years of experience working worldwide accurately recording scenes to help facilitate speedy conclusions to forensic investigations.

Using state of the art technology, data can be precisely collected in a very speedy manner and a 3D visualisation/animation prepared. This greatly improves understanding by all who are responsible for making decisions following an investigation and helps reduce ambiguity.  A highly experienced and capable team of geomatic engineers and 3D technicians prepare the data working with the client.

This video briefly demonstrates the power of the technology and is a presentation of a test burn carried by FI-UK at BRE’s Burn Hall facility in Watford, UK.

The link, BRE Burn, takes you to the video of the fire testing on which the scanning is based.

Team members get IAAI Evidence Collection Technician qualification

Six members of the FI-UK team join Peter Mansi in achieving the International Association of Arson Investigators Evidence Collection Technician qualification.  Chris Clarke, John Galvin, Mike Flanagan, Chris Lowe, Neil Baugh and Stuart Spence all challenged the comprehensive practical examination at BRE on Friday 22 June 2012, their results were scrutinised by IAAI officials in the USA and they received news late last night that they had all passed.  Prior to the 7 hour practical examination each had to undertake 29 hours of tested online training in subjects such as, Ethics, DNA, Evidence examination, the Scientific Method and Documenting the fire scene.

The Evidence CollectionTechnician Program is designed to verify an applicant’s fundamental knowledge as measured against core job performance requirements of established professional qualifications standards  and standard industry practices related to evidence collection on fire scenes. This measurement is not all inclusive of the incorporated professional standards sited but lays the foundation for measuring the holder’s fundamental ability to perform specific evidence collection tasks related to fire scene investigation at an acceptable level as measured against published acceptable practices.

FI-UK achieve SAFE Contractor accreditation.

FI-UK are pleased to announce that we are now officially a safe contractor. SAFEcontractor is a third party accreditation scheme that assesses our health and safety arrangements. Many major clients recognise the scheme and accept our SAFEcontractor certificate as confirmation of competency.