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Are You Getting an O&C?
Wednesday, June 14, 2017

The purpose of an Origin and Cause Investigation is not only to determine what caused an event to occur, but to document and support those findings through any future proceedings that may result. Not all incidents will result in denial, subrogation, or a liability claim. In those cases a scene examination only may be sufficient for claim handling. The checklist below will help you determine if you are getting a scene exam only, or a true determination of origin and cause.

Scene Examination Checklist:

☐           Scene excavation/debris removal/reconstruction
☐           Photographs
☐           Diagram
☐           Field Notes
☐           Evidence collection

Hypotheses of origin and cause possible
Fact-only report can be produced

Origin and Cause Investigation Checklist:

☐           Scene examination checklist from above
☐           Interview of person who discovered fire
☐           Information from first-arriving firefighters and/or investigating officials

Determination of origin and cause possible
Full report, including the origin and cause, if identifiable, can be produced

The interviews above are the minimum steps to test our hypotheses developed during the scene examination, but make sure the scene has been properly reconstructed:


Click here for a downloadable version of this checklist.

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