Fire investigation ‘sniffer dogs’ in action on campus

Forensic science students will observe fire investigation forensics in action during a visit from Surrey Fire and Rescue Service’s (SFRS) Fire Investigation Search Dogs on Wednesday 17 December.

The visit will demonstrate the skills these dogs have in detecting flammable residues. This information can often provide sufficient evidence to convict arsonists by tracing residues found within a fire scene, on a suspect’s clothing, or by finding hidden evidence which may have been discarded at the crime scene.

The visit will involve two dog handlers from SFRS undertaking a special task to showcase the dogs’ forensic capabilities. Students will be set the same task and the time taken by each group will be recorded and then compared.

Led by the University’s School of Physical Sciences, the visit coincides with collaborative research work between SFRS and Kent’s forensic science department. This research involves using the University’s equipment and expertise to test whether forms of counterfeit tobacco could pose a problem or mislead fire investigations with hotter burn temperatures or longer burn times.

The event takes place on Senate Lawn (in front of Templeman Library) at 1-2pm. Other spectators are welcome.

Image by West Midlands Police. Credit: CC BY