Engineering A Fire Safe World

Origins Found!

  • Tuesday, December 13, 2016
  • 12:00 PM - 2:30 PM
  • Toronto Board of Trade, First Canadian Place, 100 King Street West, Toronto, Ontario
  • 2


(depends on selected options)

Base fee:
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  • Select this option if you are a member/colleague of our Chapter and will be paying by cash or cheque at the door or you are registering after the deadline noted below.
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Registration is closed


Robert J. Shirer
R.J. Shirer & Associates Inc.

Bob is founder & President of R.J. Shirer & Associates. Since his graduation from the University of Toronto in 1983 with a Bachelor of Applied Science (Chemical Engineering) degree he has worked as Forensic Engineer and Manager, conducting Fire Investigations, Accident Reconstructions, Failure Analyses, and a variety of other forensic investigations for the insurance and legal industries.

Bob is a member in good standing of the Association of Professional Engineers of Ontario (PEO) and is also designated as a Consulting Engineer by the PEO. He is a Certified Fire & Explosion Investigator (CFEI) and is an active and contributing member to many industry-related professional groups, such as OSPE (Ontario Society of Professional Engineers), CAFI (Canadian Association of Fire Investigators), SFPE (Society of Fire Protection Engineers), NAFI (National Association of Fire Investigators), IAAI (International Association of Arson Investigators), CATAIR (Canadian Association of Technical Accident Investigators & Reconstructionists), NAPARS (National Association of Professional Accident Reconstruction Specialists), SAE International, Blue Goose Society, and various others. He also regularly attends training sessions and conferences to keep current with forensic investigation standards and techniques.

Bob has conducted seminars and training courses for various institutions and industry groups, as well as in-house seminars to professionals in the Insurance and Legal Industries. He has been admitted as an expert witness and offered opinion evidence as to the origin & cause of fires, accidents, and other technical matters in Ontario, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, and Manitoba on 27 occasions.


After familiarizing one’s self to a fire scene, a fire investigator initially starts to observe and analyze the various fire patterns available at the fire site. These patterns tell a story which can be scientifically interpreted. The patterns are governed by the laws of physics and chemistry. As a fire burns, it creates heat that causes the involved and surrounding gases to heat up and expand. As a result these gases become less dense (lighter), and they rise, forming a conical plume. If the rise of the hot combustion gases is impeded by a horizontal surface, they spread out horizontally and flow is controlled by vertical surfaces. These physical laws basically explain how we expect a fire to develop and spread. After a fire has been extinguished, certain patterns are left on combustible and non-combustible materials. These patterns are created as the fire burns and can explain how the fire developed and grew.

Bob will take us through many examples of fire patterns created at actual fire scenes to give us a general introduction to the science of fire pattern analysis leading to the determination of the origin of fires.


12:00 AM to 12:15 PM Registration & Reception
12:15 PM to 1:00 PM Lunch
1:00 PM to 1:15 pm Corporate member recognition
1:15 PM to 2:30 pm presentation & questions

dress code:

Business Attire or Jacket and Tie


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