Length 5 days
Accreditations Institution of Fire Engineers (IFE)
Sectors Emergency Services

Course overview and learning outcomes

This programme has been developed and is delivered in conjunction with the College of Policing (COP) for both fire investigators and forensic investigators.

This is a blended programme, consisting of internet-based pre-course study (25 hours), followed by a one-week practical course. All of the practical elements of the course are delivered at the FSC.

The course provides delegates with the underpinning knowledge and understanding required for the role of a fire investigator and develops their investigative skills as a fire/crime scene investigator.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the programme, delegates will be able to:   

  • Have an understanding of basic fire science, combustion, fire behaviour, toxicology of fire debris and electricity as a cause of fire
  • Recognise the roles and responsibilities of the different agencies that may be involved in a fire investigation
  • Work as an effective member of a multi-agency team in fire investigation incidents
  • Maintain health and safety at a fire investigation
  • Identify and analyse post-fire indicators that may be present at a fire scene in order to determine origin and cause of fire
  • Identify the effects of an explosion at a fire scene
  • Identify the signs of arson
  • Use observational skills to identify items recovered from the debris, and to recreate the fire scene to identify points of origin
  • Prepare and deliver a presentation on a fire investigation and the findings
Office fire

Who should attend and key benefits

Members of the UK and overseas fire services, police officers, scenes of crime officers and forensic investigators, members of other agencies who may have a role in fire investigation.

Course Entry Criteria

Delegates should be working in the field of fire/crime scene investigations, possessing substantial operational experience.They should be prepared to undertake fire investigations involving fatalities, serious injuries or major financial losses that have the potential to become the subject of legal proceedings. Delegates should also possess a good command of English.

The module is highly practical and includes a number of incident ground exercises, fire scene examination and syndicate work. In short, it provides delegates with an opportunity to practise real skills in realistic fire scenarios, whilst receiving expert guidance and feedback. The experience and skills gained will be invaluable in ensuring that their individual Service has a robust level of competency in terms of fire investigation.

Construction workers

How is the course assessed and accredited?

Progress through the e-learning programme is regularly checked using 'Knowledge Check' screens. In addition, successful completion of the programme is assessed via an online 'What Have You Learnt' test covering all the learning objectives. Delegates are assessed while carrying out their investigation and by participating in a presentation as part of a multi-agency team. The assessment is conducted through observation and questioning, with reports created on performance.

This course is accredited by the Institution of Fire Engineers (IFE) at level 5.

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