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Fire Standards Board launches Professional Standard on Fire Investigation

25 April 2022

THE FIRE Investigation Fire Standard is the tenth Professional Standard to be introduced by the Fire Standards Board and focuses on ensuring that Fire and Rescue Services deliver effective, efficient and valid fire investigations into the origin, cause and development of fires.

One of the desired outcomes of the Fire Investigation Fire Standard is that Fire and Rescue Services will have a competent and resilient capability to undertake fire investigations, all the while adhering to relevant legislation, guidance and Codes of Practice. The Fire Investigation Fire Standard also makes reference to the ISO 17020 Conformity Assessment.

The development of this Professional Standard has been led by Chris Blacksell, the National Fire Chiefs Council’s (NFCC) lead for fire investigation, and the NFCC Fire Investigation Committee.

One of the expected benefits of achieving the Fire Standard is the improved safety and well-being of members of the public and Fire and Rescue Service employees by identifying risk and communicating product safety issues. More expected benefits can be found within the Professional Standard.

As is the case with all Fire Standards, there’s a corresponding Fire Standards Implementation Tool to support Fire and Rescue Services with the implementation process itself. The tool has been designed to support Fire and Rescue Services in assessing how well they meet the Professional Standard, in turn assisting them to build an action plan that identifies and addresses any gaps.

Continuous improvement  

Fire Standards Board chair Suzanne McCarthy explained: “The Fire Investigation Fire Standard builds on our increasing portfolio of Professional Fire Standards, driving continuous improvement across the sector.”

McCarthy added: “Many thanks to those individuals and Fire and Rescue Services staff involved for their work in bringing this Professional Standard together. As is the case for all of our published Professional Standards, this one has been developed by the sector, for the sector, and is absolutely a benchmark of good practice.”

Fire Minister Lord Greenhalgh commented: “I’m delighted to see the launch of the Fire Investigation Fire Standard, which will support all Fire and Rescue Services in following a consistent and robust process when conducting their investigation procedures.”

Lord Greenhalgh added: “Fire investigators perform a vital role in helping to improve public safety, not least through contributing evidence to the justice system and supporting the development of prevention, protection and operational response activities. I’m comforted to know that this Professional Standard will champion post-incident well-being support for investigators, aiding their health in conducting their challenging roles.”