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Fire Debris & Explosives Subcommittee

Members of OSAC's Fire Debris & Explosives Subcommittee
Members of the Fire Debris & Explosives Subcommittee at the March 2020 OSAC Meeting in Norman, Oklahoma.

Officers | Members | Standards | Position Statement on E1618-14 | Discipline-Specific Baseline Documents | Research & Development Needs | Presentations

The Fire Debris & Explosives Subcommittee focuses on standards and guidelines related to the scientific examination and analysis of materials associated with fire and explosion investigations.

Officers

Brenda Christy, Subcommittee Chair, Virginia Department of Forensic Science

Kim Kunkler, Subcommittee Vice Chair, U.S. Postal Inspection Service Laboratory

Edward Sisco, Subcommittee Executive Secretary, National Institute of Standards and Technology

Members

Andrew Armstrong, Ph.D., Armstrong Forensic Laboratory

Douglas Byron, F-ABC, Forensic & Scientific Testing, Inc.

Erika Chen, New York Police Department Laboratory

John Chester, Indiana State Police Laboratory

Michelle Clarke, U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives 

Andrew Cohen, University of Massachusetts (Human Factors Representative)

Michelle Evans, U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

Christina Henry, Santa Clara County Crime Laboratory (California)

Steven L. Hoenig, American Public University

Christine M. Marsh, Federal Bureau of Investigation 

Elizabeth Meli, U.S. Department of Justice (Legal Resource Representative)

Raleigh Parrott, Federal Bureau of Investigation

Christa Rajendram, Ohio State Fire Marshal

William Randle, Missouri State Highway Patrol

Michael Sigman, Ph.D., University of Central Florida

Kevin D. Streeter, Michigan State Police

Larry Tang, University of Central Florida

Patti Williams, ANSI National Accreditation Board

Lisa Windsor, Tuscon Police Department Crime Laboratory

Standards 

Tier 1: On the OSAC Registry

  • None currently.

Tier 2: Published by an SDO

  • ASTM E1386 Standard Practice for Separation of Ignitable Liquid Residues from Fire Debris Samples by Solvent Extraction.
  • ASTM E1388 Standard Practice for Sampling of Headspace Vapors from Fire Debris Samples.
  • ASTM E1412-16 Standard Practice for Separation of Ignitable Liquid Residues from Fire Debris Samples by Passive Headspace Concentration with Active Charcoal.
  • ASTM E1413-19 Standard Practice for Separation of Ignitable Liquid Residues from Fire Debris Samples by Dynamic Headspace Concentration onto an Adsorbent Tube.
  • ASTM E1618 Standard Test Method for Ignitable Liquid Residues in Extracts from Fire Debris Samples by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry.
  • ASTM E2154 Standard Practice for Separation and Concentration of Ignitable Liquid Residues from Fire Debris Samples by Passive Headspace Concentration with Solid Phase Microextraction (SPME).
  • ASTM E2451 Standard Practice for Preserving Ignitable Liquids and Ignitable Liquid Residue Extracts from Fire Debris Samples.
  • ASTM E2881 Standard Test Method for Extraction and Derivatization of Vegetable Oils and Fats from Fire Debris and Liquid Samples with Analysis by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry.
  • ASTM E2997 Standard Test Method for Analysis of Biodiesel Products by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry.
  • ASTM E2998 Standard Practice for Characterization and Classification of Smokeless Powder.
  • ASTM E2999 Test Method for Analysis of Smokeless Powder by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry and Fourier-Transform Infrared Spectroscopy.
  • ASTM E3189-19 Practice for Separation of Ignitable Liquid Residues from Fire Debris Samples by Static Headspace Concentration onto an Adsorbent Tube.

Tier 3: Sent to an SDO

  • Terminology for the Examination of Explosives (ASTM WK56998).
  • Terminology for the Examination of Fire Debris (ASTM WK63459).
  • Standard Guide for A Systematic Approach to the Extraction, Analysis and Identification of Ignitable Liquids in Fire Debris Samples (ASTM WK64631).
  • Standard Practice for the Forensic Examination and Identification of Intact Explosives (ASTM WK67862).

Tier 4: Under Development

  • Standard Guide for the Forensic Examination and Identification of Post-Blast Explosives.
  • Standard Practice for a Forensic Explosives Analysis Training Program.
  • Standard Practice for a Forensic Fire Debris Analysis Training Program.
  • Standard Practice for Reporting Results and Opinions of Explosive Analysis.
  • Standard Practice for Reporting Results and Opinions of Fire Debris Analysis.
  • Standard for Classification of Ignitable Liquids Encountered in Forensic Fire Debris Analysis.
  • Standard Test Method for Interpretation of Gas Chromatography Electron Ionization Mass Spectrometry Data for the Identification of Ignitable Liquids.
  • Standard Practice for Analysis of Ignitable Liquids by Gas Chromatography Electron Ionization Mass Spectrometry.
  • Standard Practice for Quality Assurance of Laboratories Performing Analysis of Explosives.
  • Standard Practice for Quality Assurance of Laboratories Performing Chemical Analysis of Ignitable Liquids and Ignitable Liquid Residues.
  • Analytical Technique - FTIR of Explosives and Explosive Residues.
  • Analytical Technique - GC and GC-MS of Explosives and Explosive Residues.
  • Analytical Technique - PLM of Explosives and Explosive Residues.
  •  Analytical Technique - XRD of Explosives and Explosive Residues.

Position Statement on E1618-14

Discipline-Specific Baseline Documents

The Forensic Science Standards Board (FSSB) has provided the opportunity for OSAC Subcommittees to identify baseline documents and reference materials that best reflect the current state of the practice within their respective disciplines. 

These documents contain practical information regarding these disciplines that can help forensic scientists, judges, lawyers, researchers, other interested parties and the general public, to better understand the nature, scope, and foundations of the individual disciplines as they are currently practiced.

It is important to note that the identification of these documents in this venue does not represent an endorsement by OSAC or NIST.  Only documents that are posted on the OSAC Registry constitute OSAC endorsement. All copyrights for these documents are reserved by their owners. Subcommittee position statements or responses to data collections by the subcommittee represent the consensus opinion of the subcommittee, not necessarily the position of the entire OSAC organization or NIST.

*NEW* Reference Lists:

Baseline Documents:

Historical References:

Resources:

TWGFEX: Fire Debris Training:

Research & Development Needs

Presentations

  • None at this time.

In general, the development of standards and guidelines is transitioning from the Scientific Working Groups (SWGs) to the OSAC. Some SWGs will continue to operate to provide other resources within their discipline. The existing SWG documents will remain in effect until updated documents are disseminated by the OSAC or the SWG. SWGDAM will retain the responsibility for updating the FBI DNA Quality Assurance Standards.

– Forensic Science Standards Board: March 2015

Created June 27, 2014, Updated May 20, 2020