The venue for this event is The Royal College of Pathologists
2 Carlton House Terrace is the home of the Royal College of Pathologists, a professional membership organisation, concerned with all matters relating to the science and practice of pathology.
Carlton House Terrace was constructed largely between 1826 and 1829 and it remains the property of the Queen. Its balconies overlook the Mall in central London where Buckingham Palace stands.
This is a Euroscicon Small Conference, an outline of the day can be found at
This annual networking forum gathers together experts in DVI to discuss current legislation and techniques involved in DVI
This event has CPD accreditation and is part of the Forensic Forums 2013 series – www.forensicforums2013.com
Michael J C Burgess OBE
Coroner of The Queen's Household
Legal Secretary of the Coroners' Society of England and Wales
9:00 – 9:45 Registration
9:45 – 10:15 Introduction by the Chair: Michael J C Burgess OBE
Coroner of The Queen's Household
Legal Secretary of the Coroners' Society of England and Wales
The Role of the Coroner in the DVI Process
Michael J C Burgess OBE, Coroner of The Queen's Household, Legal Secretary of the Coroners' Society of England and Wales
The importance of inidividual victim identification. The principles of Clearke LJ (Marchioness nsi Report). Who does what.. Role and duties of a coroner, in relation to those deaths where there is reason to suspect that the death was violent, or unnatural or sudden of kunknown cause. The responsibility of the coroner's inquest to establish from evidence who the deceased person was and how, when and where the death took place - the inquest is not a forum where any liability issue is addressed.
10:15 – 10:45 Age estimation from developing teeth
Dr Helen Liversidge, Institute of Dentistry, Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, London
Dr Helen Liversidge's research focuses on the age variation in tooth formation and the application of developing teeth to estimate age. Areas of research include testing the validity and reliability of established dental ageing methods and an ongoing worldwide collaboration investigating ethnic differences in tooth formation. Her work has led to the development of several new methods including the London Atlas of tooth development and eruption, a method used with significant success and impact in areas of natural disasters and forensic investigations.
10:45 – 11:15 Speakers’ photo then mid-morning break/networking and trade show
Please try to visit all the exhibition stands during your day at this event. Not only do our sponsors enable Euroscicon to keep the registration fees competitive, but they are also here specifically to talk to you
11:15 – 11:45 DVI - 101" training in an undergraduate and postgraduate context
Professor John P. Cassella , Dr Roger Summers and Dr Caroline Sturdy Colls Department of Forensic Science and Crime Science, Faculty of Science, Staffordshire University, UK.
Internationally there are a number of Disaster Management organisations offering specialist personnel, equipment, systems and advice at incidents, particularly those involving major loss of life. These organisations offer essential services and have proven their usefulness in international incidents such as the Asian Tsunami and a number of earthquakes, hurricans, and air crashes in which there has been a major loss of life. These situations inevitably involve complex forensic environments in which the dead are present. A number of staff employed by such organisations are recruited from the UK science-graduate pool of anthropologists, biologists, forensic scientists etc. Whilst there are some professional level training courses in the UK there is little opportunity for graduates to appreciate, practice or to train for such events within their degree courses and there is limited ‘scenario training’ offered by the Disaster Management organisations. At Staffordshire University, in considering this current situation concerning basic education and exposure to the stressful environment requiring DVI teams we have incorporated training within the forensic science modular components. Students have opportunities to complete Interpol DVI post mortem forms using a human (not manikin) in order to appreciate the complexity of body mapping, clothing and jewellery cataloguing. Students also undertake analysis of a complex scene involving [mock] cadavers and potential anamnestic materials. The opportunities, successes and challenges that such training involved shall be considered in order that these learning opportunities can be evaluated for dissemination into other appropriate undergraduate courses.
11:45– 12:15 Issues for dvi staff working in remote locations and unfamiliar environments
Professor Peter Ellis, Queensland Health Forensic & Scientific Services, Nambour Hospital, Nambour, Queensland, Australia
Multi-fatality disasters can occur at any time and in any location and it is relatively unusual for there to be a large established forensic facility or mortuary close to the site of the catastrophe. Indeed, if the disaster is of natural origin, such as an earthquake or tsunami, then the facility itself may be affected and may become unusable. Additionally, the advent and ease of extensive international travel has resulted in the observation that many mass disasters produce victims from many countries. This inevitably gives rise to forensic responses from many different national DVI squads and police forces. This presentation describes some of the issues that face practitioners in these national squads who are requested to travel to unfamiliar environments. They must either establish a full DVI operation in a jurisdiction to which they are not accustomed or else they must conduct their forensic duties under the guidance or control of authorities from differing backgrounds and legal structures.The presentation discusses some of the cultural, legal and administrative issues that face forensic practitioners working away from their normal jurisdiction. It also describes some logistical matters especially in relation to establishing, staffing, operating and maintaining a mortuary facility in unfamiliar surroundings. Finally, the important matters of predeployment preparation, working relationships and support, both professional and personal, are discussed.
12:15 – 13:15 Lunch/networking and trade show
This is also a good time to fill out your feedback forms and any questionnaires
13:15 – 15:00 Question and Answer Session
Delegates will be asked to submit questions to a panel of experts. Questions can be submitted before the event or on the day
15:00 – 15:30 Afternoon Tea/Coffee, networking and trade show
15:30 – 16:00 DVI in the post-tsunami era; Global disasters and the importance of local culture in disaster victim identification
Dr Jan Bikker, Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification, University of Dundee, Scotland
The complex and challanging nature of the identification process following the 2004 South-East Asia tsunami has provided the DVI community with valuable lessons.The post-tsunami period led to new areas of exploration in terms of international cooperation in DVI, the concept of psychosocial support for surviving relatives and disposition of remains. Less focus is given to DVI processes in (post) conflict areas and cultural customs which may impact the identification process. The presentation will elaborate on the role of local cultural customs in relation to recent large-scale disasters and its implications for the identification process, with specific attention to (post)conflict areas.
16:00 – 16:30 INTERPOL Disaster Victim Identification
Mr Howard Way, Metropolitan Police, UK
An overview of the work of the INTERPOL Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) Steering Group
The INTERPOL DVI Steering Group is made up of representatives from 12 countries, who report to a larger DVI Standing Committee representing the 190 countries that are members of INTERPOL. The group works to produce international guidance regarding standards of investigation following a mass fatality incident., consulting and seeking agreement with member countries.
16:30 - 17:00 Problems of DVI missions in failed states
Hans-Peter Kirsch, BAHID, Germany
On January 12th 2010 a magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck Haiti.
An estimate of 200.000 people has been reported dead, about 300.000 injured, 1.000.000 homeless, 280.000 buildings collapsed or severely damaged.
International media video reports showed human remains dug into mass graves, not separated but together with the debris of the collapsed buildings.
Haiti can be described as a so-called „failed state“. In 2009, Haiti was listed on the failed state index on rank number 12. Haiti could obviously not take care of a DVI process, particularly with regard to the non-existing legislative after the devastating earthquake occurred. The overall observed disaster preparedness and disaster resilience in Haiti tended to be zero.
It is not reported if Haiti issued the Major Disaster Assessment form to ask Interpol for assistance and relief. It is not reported if even any person survived who would have been able and in charge to issue this document.
The overall responsibility for Haiti was legally in the hands of the UN mission MINUSTAH, who tragically lost many lives as well, there under a substantial number of their chairing personnel.
Additionally, foreign troops came into the country and took control over strategic important infrastructure like e.g. the international airport.
This scenario was unprecedented at that time.
In such a scenario the first questions are: Who is in charge of any relief processes? Who is in charge of a possible DVI process? Who is in charge to declare if a DVI process is established at all? Who is in charge to declare a limit of human losses, which make a DVI process unhopeful?
17:00 Chairman’s summing up
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Keywords: Forensic Anthropology, Anatomy, DVI, Forensic Jewellery, Design Research, Identity, Emergent Identification Technologies, Disaster Victim Identification, DNA, collection, storage, transportation, computed tomography, mas fataility, identification, logistics, cause of death, Earthquake, reconciliation,dental, mortuary, pathology, Mass Disaster, Post Mortem, autopsy, anti-mortem, repatriation, DNA Profiling, Lineage markers, Ethics, AF447, Commingled remains, anthropology, DNA, Culture, (Post)Conflict, Identification,undergraduate, body mapping,Developing teeth, dental radiograph, estimating age, accuracy, Interpol, Disaster Victim Identification, Reconciliation Investigation, body mapping
About the chair
Michael John Clement Burgess, OBE (born 31 March 1946) is the Coroner of the Queen's Household. He was educated at King's College London. He was appointed deputy coroner in 1991 and was appointed coroner in 2002. He was in charge into the inquest into the deaths of Diana, Princess of Walesand Dodi Fayed until July 2006. He has been the Surrey coroner since 1986.
Brief Biog: 1970, Admitted a Solicitor ; 1979, Appointed Deputy (Surrey) Coroner; 1986-2011, H.M.Coroner for Surrey; 1991-2003, Hon. Sec Coroners Society of England & Wales; 1991-present, responsible for all aspects of emergency planning with coroners and Departments of H M Government; 2000-2001, gave evidence to Clarke, LJ, non-statutory inquiry on Marchioness; 2002-present Coroner of The Queen's Household (Deputy 1991-2001); 2004-5, Member of Home Office/HPA working party on CBRN Mass Fatality events; 2007-present, joint organiser of UK DVI Coroners Cadre; lecturer, contributor etc for various training events and author of several guidance papers especially for coroners.
About the Speakers
Jan Bikker, is a post-doctoral researcher at the Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification (CAHID) at the University of Dundee. He obtained a doctorate from the University of Sheffield on the subject of disaster victim identification. He has participated in disasters in Thailand, Haiti and Peru and conducts casework for Scottish police forces. In Dundee, he is currently working on the FASTID-project with INTERPOL to establish a centralised international database to aid identification of unidentified bodies and missing persons and in this capacity works with international DVI teams and UK police forces on DVI-related training. Dr Bikker is a Membership Secretary and council member of the British Association for Human Identification (BAHID) and a committee member of the British Association for Forensic Anthropologists (BAFA).
Helen Liversidge is a senior clinical lecturer in Paediatric Dentistry at Queen Mary University of London, Barts and The Royal London School of Medicine and Dentistry. She gained her PhD at University College London on dental development of the Spitalfield's Collection, while working in general practice. Her team of students and collaborators have published widely on the variation in tooth formation with age, testing the validity and reliability of established dental ageing methods, new reference data and new approaches to testing performance of age estimation methods.
John P. Cassella, graduated with a degree in Medical Laboratory Sciences and Chemistry in 1988 from Leicester and a Doctorate degree in orthopedic pathology from the University College London in 1993. John completed his postdoctoral work at Imperial College and has worked in many of London’s teaching hospitals in a variety of areas of medical research before taking up a post at the University of Central England as a lecturer in Biomedical Sciences. Subsequently he became a Reader in Biomedical Sciences and ‘Programme Leader’ for the Forensic Science degree courses at the University of Derby. John joined the forensic team at Staffordshire University in 2005 where he teaches aspects of forensic pathology, human identification, forensic biology and body recovery and conducts research into clandestine burial chemistry and also in sexual assault examination. He has successfully delivered short, continuous professional development courses which have included ‘forensics for firefighters’ and teaches on the first UK course forensic nursing staff.
As a former Director of Forensic Services in the Police Service, Roger Summers had a corporate senior management responsibility for the Force Scientific Support, Fingerprint and Forensic Photography Departments, Chemical Development Laboratories, Forensic Submissions Facility, Technical Support Unit and Forensic Medical Examiners. Now a multi-skilled senior manager, he has over thirty eight years continuous experience in all scientific support disciplines. Operationally, Roger has been involved in numerous murder investigations and many high profile cases, locally, nationally and internationally, almost all of which have led to successful detections, the offenders convicted. He was a Forensic advisor to a former Deputy Chief Constable for over 15 years. During his career he was an active member of many high profile committees. Roger helped make American legal history by preparing and producing photographic ‘bite mark’ evidence leading to the successful prosecution of a rapist-murder (the first time any person had been charged and convicted of ‘first degree murder’ solely on ‘bite mark’ evidence in the USA). These pioneering techniques have now been accepted as the norm when Forensic Odontological evidence is presented in the judicial process worldwide. A senior lecturer of international repute, Roger has given several hundred professional lectures and presentations some so far afield as America, Germany, Hungary, India, Jamaica, Mauritius, Russia and Switzerland. He was a member of the initial multi-national task force team, deployed at the request of the Australian and Thai governments in the wake of the Asian Tsunami where he assisted in establishing forensic protocols for the identification of thousands who perished as a result of the Tsunami. Roger was invited to perform the role of Forensic Consultant, Lecturer at the inaugural and validation stages of the pioneering BSc (Hons) Forensic Science Degree at the University of Derby. His involvement continues at all levels of the forensic science undergraduate and postgraduate academic process as a Senior Lecturer in Forensic and Crime Science at Staffordshire University. Amongst his responsibilities at the University is to design bespoke short courses in respect of ‘Continuous Professional Development’, both within the sphere of Academia and the wider external organisations and Public sectors. On Christmas Eve 2006, Roger returned to the UK, having spent a number of weeks on deployment as a member of the forensic investigation team in Brazil following their worst “Air Disaster” when two aircraft collided at 37,000ft above the Amazon Jungle. More recently in 2010, he was called in by the Lebanese Authorities and Ethiopian Airlines to lead the disaster victim identification protocols and strategies involved with a disaster. He also acted as Forensic liaison between all countries involved. A Boeing 737-800 crashed into the Mediterranean Sea in stormy weather shortly after takeoff from Beirut Rafik Hariri International Airport. None of the 90 passengers and crew on board survived. His expertise in Human Identification Techniques and forensic related matters are much in demand internationally both from a teaching and operational perspective
Howard Way is a Detective Inspector with the Metropolitan Police. He manages a small team based at New Scotland Yard, which coordinates Disaster Victim Identification, Family Liaison and Casualty Bureau arrangements within London.
Howard delivers training for the Metropolitan Police Service and for the National Police Improvements Agency (UK College of Policing).
Howard represents the United Kingdom (Association of Chief Police Officers & Home Office) as a member of the INTERPOL Disaster Victim Identification Steering Group.
Caroline Sturdy Colls graduated from the University of Birmingham with a BA(Hons) Archaeology and Ancient History in 2007 and an MPhil(B) in Archaeological Practice in 2008. Specialising in forensic archaeology, she worked first as a consultant through the University and then for MFL Forensics. Since 2005 she has undertaken consultancy for various UK Police forces with regards the search and recovery of buried remains. Her PhD, also from the University of Birmingham, focused on the application of archaeological techniques to Holocaust landscapes. Having joined Staffordshire University as a Lecturer in Forensic Investigation in 2010, Caroline teaches and researches in the areas of forensic archaeology, mass grave investigation and disaster management. She has developed a number of short courses in forensic awareness and crime scene investigation.
Peter Ellis is currently Regional Senior Forensic Pathologist for Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia. Originally trained in medicine at Cambridge, UK, he moved to Australia in 1977 where he completed his pathology training and worked as a general and forensic pathologist in Queensland. He became Director of Forensic Medicine in Westmead Hospital in Sydney in 1988 and stayed there until returning to Queensland in 2006. He has had a long term interest in identification science and DVI in particular. He was part of the British Forensic Team working in Kosovo in 2000 and 2002 and was in the Australian DVI response team during the aftermath of the first Bali bombing in 2002. He was the lead pathologist for the Australian Federal Police response to the Boxing Day Tsunami in Thailand in 2004, being a team leader in the first response team and setting up the first mortuary to be established in the days after the disaster. He coordinated the Australian pathology response to that incident and has participated in many training programs and DVI operations in various countries throughout South East Asia. He is involved in a program to develop an improved and technologically sophisticated method for body labelling, tracking and management throughout the DVI process.
He is an adjunct Professor of Forensic Medicine and Pathology at Griffith University , Brisbane and also holds adjunct Professorships at Edith Cowan University, Perth (in the School of Computer and Security Science) and Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane (in the School of Public Health). He is an active participant in the Pathology Working Group of the Interpol Standing Committee on DVI and is also Deputy Chair (Scientific) of the Australasian DVI Committee, the primary coordinating group of DVI resources and responses for Australia and New Zealand.
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