News & Media

Training in marine vessel fire investigation

By: Nicole Harvey

Category: Operational Information, Training & Recruitment

  10.23 AM 12 September, 2015


Location: General

Views: 1387

The latest professional development opportunity for CFA Fire Investigators was conducted as part of the Victorian Association of Fire Investigators (VAFI) training day on Thursday 10 September in Echuca.

Over 35 CFA Fire Investigators from across the state attended along with personnel from the Victoria Police Arson & Explosives Squad, Victoria Police Criminal Investigation Unit, Forensic Services, Metropolitan Fire Brigade, Energy Safe Victoria and representatives from the insurance industry.

The theme for the training day was “Marine Vessel Fire Investigation”.

The speakers invited to present at this training day included representatives from:

  • NSW Transport Roads & Maritime Services
  • Victoria Police - Marine Investigation Unit Water Police Squad
  • Energy Safe Victoria
  • Metropolitan Fire Brigade

The speakers presented on a range of topics relating to:

  • Construction materials and designs of marine craft and vessels
  • Types of marine craft and vessels –  house boats, fishing boats, pleasure craft, personal water craft, jet skis, commercial and private paddle boats, ski boats / wakeboard boats, etc.
  • Prevention and maintenance on vessels
  • Boating safety
  • Electrical compliance on marine vessels
  • Gas regulations and common faults on marine vessels

A number of case studies were also presented to illustrate the investigation process to determine the origin and cause of the marine vessel fires. Some of the common causes included:

  • Fuel leaks occurring within the vessel and coming into contact with an ignition source leading to a fire and/or explosion
  • Modifications or alterations to motors that are not marine rated
  • Lack of maintenance e.g. cracked or perished fuel lines
  • Hot exhaust and/or manifolds coming into contact with fuel lines
  • Transmission overheating / failure
  • Electrical wiring / appliances
  • Gas appliances e.g. stoves, fridges, heaters or lanterns

This training day provided the Fire Investigators with an opportunity to obtain further information and knowledge relating to how marine vessels are built and the common causes of fires.

State Fire Investigation Coordinator Nicole Harvey

Last Updated: 14 September 2015