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Fire Scene Evidence Collection Guide


This section details how to properly locate, document, collect, label, package, store, and preserve wood during fire scene evidence collection and for subsequent use in testing or legal proceedings. Wood is found throughout fire scenes in many forms, including building materials, furniture, flooring, paneling, and décor. This section focuses on collection of wood flooring, baseboards, and stairs. The type of analyses that may be performed informs how wood in these usages should be collected and packaged. Typically, wood in these usages is collected for ignitable liquid residue analysis, which requires selecting a productive sampling area and packaging in an airtight container to trap vapors. Wood flooring and baseboards can contain other evidence, such as burn patterns and toolmarks. Follow the procedures in this section to implement fire scene evidence collection best practices for wood. If you are unsure which fire scene evidence procedure to use for wood or do not have sufficient experience to execute the procedure, consult your laboratory prior to collection.


Select a type of evidence to review its collection and packaging procedures.

Remember to also review the Checklists prior to collection and prior to releasing the scene.

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