Forensic Fire Investigation

Forensic Fire Investigation

Causes of fire and potential improvements in fire safety identified

Professional forensic fire investigation services

The causes and consequences of fire are of great importance to fire services, building owners, insurers, businesses and safety professionals.  Detailed, independent and expert investigation of fires is vital in order to identify the cause of a fire and for any potential improvements in fire safety to be identified. 

In addition to analysing fire scenes and items involved in a fire, the burning behaviour of materials also may need to be analysed in order to determine how a fire potentially developed.  Bureau Veritas operates a team of dedicated fire investigators who have worked in the field of fire investigation for over 40 years.

Key services for forensic fire investigation


  • Investigation of fire scenes to establish the area of origin and cause of the fire
  • Detailed laboratory analysis of samples removed from fire scenes to identify any faults or likely sources of ignition.
  • Determining the burning behaviour of materials and how they may have contributed to fire development.
  • Measurement of material performance in standard and bespoke fire tests including assessment and interpretation of results and comparison with any relevant standards.
  • Small-scale simulation of fire scenarios.
  • Non-destructive X-ray analysis of fire-damaged samples both in the laboratory and on scene.
  • Expert witness testimony relating to fire investigations (including deliberate and fatal fires) in support of legal actions, litigation and inquests.

Bureau Veritas - Experts in forensic fire investigation

The Fire Science and Chemical Management team at Bureau Veritas provide an expert testing and advisory service for the meticulous examination of fire scenes and samples for further analysis. Our experienced team have carried out hundreds of fire scene investigations alongside investigators from the fire and rescue services and other agencies and have examined thousands of samples removed from fire scenes.  Our team will carry out a full investigation starting with the scene investigation, selection and analysis of samples through to reporting and making recommendations for fire safety improvements.

Bureau Veritas maintains a purpose-built forensic fire investigation laboratory to which samples can be sent for further examination. Our fire investigators are experienced in determining whether or not an item was the cause of the fire or was damaged by an external fire. 

In addition to forensic fire investigation Bureau Veritas is a global leader in testing, inspection and certification (TIC) and has more than 190+ years of experience. As well as fire investigation, we can help provide you with services such as fire service scientific support or fire service training.

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