Fire forensics division in our laboratory emphasizes mainly onthe determination of origin/site of fire in those cases which encompassesvehicle or property fire, followed by the determination of the root cause offire and this eventually aids in distinguishing between fire and arson. Byvehicle fire, we mean fire in all types of vehicles such as trucks, e-rickshaws,cars, tempo, etc. and by property fire, we mean fire in houses, factories,plants, etc. Since, fire has the ability to mask/conceal crucial evidencespresent at the incident place, detailed and systematic approach is what weadopt to solve the case. In addition to this, our investigation methodology is pertinentto small and large fires and those involving fatalities as well.
Our well-qualified and experienced team of experts routinely conduct investigations based on standard protocols which commences from collecting exhibits to providing persuasive and effective explanation of our opinions and reports to insurance companies and courts.
Fire departmentof Sherlock institute of forensic science is dedicated towards detection,investigation, collection of evidences found in arson case. The experts fromour fire team visit crime scene scour the area for evidence gathering, whichleads to identification of different type of devices or fuels that were used inrespective case. These physical evidences attained by a systematic approachlead the expert distinguish between fire and arson.
The systematicexamination of these evidences such as fuel or source of evidence. A properguideline established by law enforcement is followed by our team in order tobring out the findings.
The objective of our fire department is to helpinsurance sectors and law enforcement agencies with the truth. This allows ourclient to analyze the situation and establish whether or not the claim isfraudulent. Also, it helps law enforcement agencies in their ruling.
ESTABLISHINGTHE ORIGIN OF FIRE – It is important to identify the spot from which the fireinitiated and it can be achieved by assessing the area of heaviest damage and lessdamage. Usually, the heaviest fire damage arises at or near the point of originof fire. Analysis of fire patterns, evaluation of charred and burned portions,examination of glass fractures, estimation of the condition of vehicles or appliancesat the premises are some of the parameters that help establish the origin of thefire. There may be more than one point of origin of fire available and this is,at times, an indication of the intentional setting of fire i.e. arson.
ESTABLISHINGTHE ROOT CAUSE OF FIRE – Since, fire in the vehicle or premises could be accidentalor a result of deliberate act, therefore establishing its root cause is anessential. It is concerned with determining the factors and circumstances thatlead to the occurrence of fire. Careful inspection as well as analysis ofpotential heat and power sources detected at or near the point of origin offire is needed for establishment of root cause of fire.
CHEMICALEXAMINATION OF DEBRIS COLLECTED FROM THE SCENE OF FIRE – Oncecollected debris is subjected to authentication, their chemical examination isthe next phase required for successful case resolution. However, this isentirely up to the query raised by our client, whether to chemically examinethe debris collected or not. The possibility of a potential or unintentionalfire is ascertained by obtaining results from chemical examination conducted onthe debris collected.
INVESTIGATIONKIT – It comprises of barricading tape, measuring tape, tongs,tweezers, forceps, pliers, screw driver and various other tools to access thecrime scene. Other than these, it comprises of gloves, masks, goggles for thesafety of investigator. It also comprises of marking boards and differentpackaging material, in order to mark the exhibits found at crime scene andlater, lift and pack these exhibits.
DSLR CAMERA –Photographic as well as video graphic evidences are collected from the incidentscene using DSLR, which supports in formation of persuasive opinions and accuratereports.
STEREO ZOOMMICROSCOPE – It helps in observing a magnified view of the electricalwires collected from the scene of incidence. Each collected wire sample isinitially cleaned to allow for microscopic analysis and photographed.
TLC KIT – This kitcomprises of TLC chamber, TLC plates and various chemicals, which helps inchemical examination of fire debris and ultimately determines the presence orabsence of petroleum products in it.
GASCHROMATOGRAPHY – MASS SPECTROPHOTOMETER (GC-MS) – It isconsidered as the accepted standard for identification of ignitable liquids infire debris collected from the scene of incidence. It is an instrumentationtechnique, which is much accurate and efficient.