Effectiveness of Fire Investigtion Dogs

[name removed] (Account suspended) made this Freedom of Information request to London Fire Commissioner (London Fire Brigade)

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

The request was successful.

[name removed] (Account suspended)

Dear London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority (London Fire Brigade),

I would like to know how effective your fire investigation dogs are in both financial terms and in the fight against arson, so how many people have been caught. In addition I would like to know how much they cost to be part of the fire service and where this money comes from.

Yours faithfully,
[name removed]

London Fire Commissioner (London Fire Brigade)

Dear [name removed],

Thank you for your request for information. It will be considered under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. We will provide a response promptly and in any case within 20 working days.

Regards

Richard Foreman
Information Access Officer
London Fire Brigade
169 Union Street, London SE1 0LL
T: 020 8555 1200 ext 30401
E: [email address]

Visit our website at www.london-fire.gov.uk

show quoted sections

[name removed] (Account suspended)

Dear London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority (London Fire Brigade),

I would like to know what has happened to my FOI Request

Yours faithfully,
[name removed]

London Fire Commissioner (London Fire Brigade)

I have now left the London Fire Brigade.

For information requests please email [LFB request email]

Alternatively please calll
Aidan Bartley on 020 8555 1200 x 30086
Andy Mobbs x30386
Sarah Kelly x30427

Regards

Richard Foreman

 

Email disclaimer

The information in this email may contain confidential or privileged
materials.

Please read the full email disclaimer notice at
[1]london-fire.gov.uk/EmailDisclaimer

 

For fire safety advice please go to [2]london-fire.gov.uk/YourSafety

References

Visible links
1. http://www.london-fire.gov.uk/EmailDiscl...
2. http://www.london-fire.gov.uk/YourSafety...

[name removed] (Account suspended)

Dear London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority (London Fire Brigade),
I have withdrawn the request due to the FOI member of staff leaving. I will submit a new one to the request team in due course.

Yours faithfully,

[name removed]

London Fire Commissioner (London Fire Brigade)

Dear [name removed]

 

Thank you for your request under the Freedom of Information Act dated 22
March 2014 regarding Hydrocarbon Detector Dogs (HCDD). The answers to your
questions are set out below.

 

I would like to know how effective your fire investigation dogs are in
both financial terms and in the fight against arson, so how many people
have been caught.

 

HCDD are trained to detect the presence of at least ten ignitable liquids
ranging from acetone to petrol, whether neat, evaporated or burnt; these
are known as target substances. A dog will identify an area of interest
which is then documented before samples are taken by a police scenes of
crime officer for analysis. A dog’s sense of smell is so good that it can
detect an ignitable liquid that the portable liquid accelerant equipment
(GasTec), carried on the fire investigation team vans, cannot detect in
minute quantities.

 

HCDD are also used to rule out the presence of target substances, which is
equally important when determining the cause of fires. The role of an HCDD
usually ends when a target substance is located, or not, as the case may
be.

 

The main advantage of HCDD  is the speed with which they can cover large
areas.  This means a cordon, or search area, can quickly be substantially
reduced in size, as the dogs either confirm or discount  the presence of
target substances. This results in time saved at incidents. Another
advantage is that the dogs have no bias when confirming or discounting the
presence of target substances. 

 

London Fire Brigade (LFB) currently has three HCDD.  Last year LFB’s HCDD
attended approximately 200 incidents. In addition, the dogs attend
community safety events, as they are very effective at breaking down
social barriers and have attracted praise and positive feedback from many
different sources (ie. event organisers, politicians, and community
groups).

 

LFB does not hold figures for the number of persons apprehended in
connection with matters where HCDD are involved. LFB does seek feedback
from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), with regard  to arson cases
which we handle. However the amount of information we receive is dependent
on CPS, and we are not always informed of the outcome of cases going to
trial. Therefore we do not hold specific information on how many people
are apprehended in connection with such matters.

 

In addition I would like to know how much they cost to be part of the fire
service and where this money comes from.

 

Each dog currently costs approximately £7,500 per year. This covers
expenses including training (internal and external), kennelling, vets, and
food. The dogs are currently internally funded by LFB. However we do seek
sponsorship opportunities.

 

If you would like more information about HCDD, you may find the
Association of Fire Investigation Dog  Handlers’ website of interest. See
http://www.fidogs.co.uk

 

I hope you find the information provided useful. However, if you have any
queries, please direct them to [LFB request email]

 

You have the right to ask the Authority to review this response. If you
wish to do so, please set out in writing your reasons for asking and
address them to David Wyatt – Head of Information Management and
Performance at [email address]

 

You also have the right to ask the Information Commissioner for a decision
as to whether the Authority has dealt with your request in accordance with
the requirements of the FOIA. If you wish to do this, you must first ask
the Authority to review its decision; and then you must apply promptly to
the Information Commissioner at: The Information Commissioner's Office,
Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF.

 

Kind regards

 

Sarah Kelly

Information Access Officer                                         

London Fire Brigade

169 Union Street, London SE1 0LL

T: 020 8555 1200 ext 30401

E: [email address]

Visit our website at www.london-fire.gov.uk

 

show quoted sections