Fatal Fire Investigation
All fires have a starting point. No matter how big or how small, fires begin somewhere. When it comes to fatal fire investigations, Casalinova Investigations, Inc is tried and tested with over 23 years of service. Our fire investigators specialize in origin and cause investigations in Cleveland, Ohio and beyond. Whether the loss occurred to a residential home, a vehicle, a garage, or a commercial building, we have the tools and knowledge to get you the answers you need. Determining the origin and cause of a fatal fire is our top priority, and we will arrive promptly to the scene. Our fire analysis includes the basic investigative plan - determine the origin of the fire, the method of its spread throughout the structure, the probable ignition sequence or cause of the fire, and the responsibility for its cause.
Unfortunately, a fire investigation may turn into a fatal fire investigation if someone is found deceased, or a death is assumed to have occurred. This may increase the pressure, but we stick true to our training and guidance from the NFPA.
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, over 3,500 deaths resulted from fires in 2019. Adults aged 85+ are 3.6% more likely to perish in a fire than the general population.
In some instances, fatal fires are accidental and no foul play is involved. In fact, according to the U.S. Fire Administration, 7.5% of the residential fatal fires which occurred in 2019 were caused by an electrical malfunction. These fires could involve the wiring of a home, or items such as washer or dryer, a fan, or a space heater. We also see fatal fires in residential buildings which occur due to cooking, smoking, and carelessness.
Our certified fire forensic investigators systematically conduct fire examinations using advanced scientific methods. At the end of the day, what we do is a science. We must run through the scientific process, create our hypotheses on what has happened, and walk through the steps to verify our discovery. In addition to the scene examination, a complete investigation is conducted to help aid in the discovery of the true cause of the fire or explosion. In order to make a determination, our investigators ascertain the initial fuel or first material ignited, secondary fuels, and the ignition source.
The National Fire Protection Association produced NFPA 921 to transition our field into a more systematic process. With a new root in science, we follow the scientific method to come to a firm and knowledgeable conclusion during our origin and cause investigation. The outcome of analyzing data and developing and testing hypotheses is valid, justifiable results.
NFPA 921: The Guide for Fire and Explosion Investigations defines ‘cause’ as:
“the circumstances, conditions or agencies that bring together a fuel, ignition source, and oxidizer (such as air or oxygen) resulting in a fire or combustion explosion”.
The term ‘origin’ refers to:
“point of origin or area of origin, the exact physical location where a heat source and a fuel come in contact with each other and a fire begins”.
When looking for a fire investigator, you should call on us to help you at all hours of the day. You never want the case to start to go cold. Make sure you call our investigators at the start of filing your claims! Sometimes insurance companies will require that you find and hire a fire investigator to perform a fire analysis, and we will immediately begin working on the investigation.