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State Fire Investigation Forum 2015
The State Fire Investigation Forum was held at Dixons Creek on Sunday 19 July 2015 with over 60 CFA fire investigators from across the state attending.
The forum was officially opened by Chief Officer Euan Ferguson who provided his own personal insight as a fire investigator, a role which Euan performed early on in his career.
Euan advised that there continues to be an increased focus on what the outcomes and results are from conducting fire investigations. The findings from conducting investigations into fires are important as it has a direct link to fire prevention.
A number of CFA and external agency guest speakers presented the following topics relating to fire and explosion investigation at this year’s State Fire Investigation Forum:
- Detective Acting Inspector Jeff Maher from the Victoria Police Arson & Explosives Squad provided an overview on the outcomes from the 2014-15 fire season from the perspective of Victoria Police.
- Mr John Kelleher the Officer in Charge of the Victoria Police Forensic Services Department Fire & Explosion Unit provided an interesting presentation on the 2009 fires from a forensic fire investigation viewpoint.
- State Fire Investigation Coordinator Nicole Harvey presented an overview of the outcomes and achievements that had occurred from the CFA Fire Investigation Program during 2014-15.
- Deputy Chief Officer John Haynes conducted an interactive session on the direction of the CFA Fire Investigation Program.
- Senior Station Officer Geoff Ranzenhofer presented a case study on the large scale vegetation fire investigation that occurred at Donnybrook in February 2013. The presentation outlined the fire investigation process undertaken to determine the origin and cause of the fire through to attendance at court to present evidence as a fire investigator.
- An overview of the successful delivery of the Structural & Vehicle Fire Investigation Course to the National Fire Authority (NFA) in Fiji was co-presented by State Fire Investigation Coordinator Nicole Harvey and Senior Station Officer Geoff Ranzenhofer who were the instructors for this course. This presentation also provided details of the ongoing support arrangements that exist between the CFA and NFA in the area of fire investigation.
Based on the feedback received from the personnel who attended the forum, the participants found the sessions and topics to be informative and beneficial to them as fire investigators.
The State Fire Investigation Forum is held annually to enable professional development opportunities for CFA fire investigators, fire investigation team leaders and district fire investigation coordinators.
State Fire Investigation Coordinator Nicole Harvey