Industrial Fire

What To Do After A Fire – Resources Sector/Industry

Isolate the fire scene once it is safe to do so (Prevent unauthorized access to the fire scene. There are numerous people that assume they have the right of access to a fire scene for various reasons. These people should be discouraged from entering or interfering)

Do not move or remove any debris unless absolutely necessary for safety or operational reasons. (Movement of debris will result in the loss of forensic evidence that may alter the outcome of an investigation).

Take numerous photographs and notes of times, people and equipment. Encourage those present during the fire to download their media photographs of the event for later examination during the investigation. Identify where possible if those images are correctly date and time stamped.

Quarantine electronic media and data to prevent its loss relating to the event or machine e.g. service records/maintenance records. Check to determine if the electronic date and time stamp on any media or data is correct e.g. recording of radio transmissions, is the recording media on the correct date and time.

As early as possible recognize the need for a professional Fire Investigator to assist the investigation process (Investigation teams may have Engineers/Operators or Maintenance Staff well experienced in e.g. mechanical or electrical engineering but they don’t necessarily have the knowledge and experience to provide reports about the origin and cause of a fire)

Can a Fire Investigator assist with the Root Cause Analysis?

Is there a need to appoint an independent Fire Investigator to provide a report that can be transmitted to an Industry Regulator or Statutory Authority?

Is there a need to appoint an independent Fire Investigator to investigate the cause of the fire to prevent other similar events occurring?

Consider if there is a need to appoint an independent Fire Investigator on the basis there may be a recovery of costs possible from a third party or a third party may be seek recovery of costs for damages from the fire. In either scenario, if the matter proceeds to litigation an independent report will be invaluable.

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