Crime scene investigations need standards too!

There is no typical crime scene – but documenting and collecting evidence is critical to solving the crime.

Consistent practices and procedures to preserve the integrity of material collected from crime scenes have been established in three recently published national forensic standards.

One of the benefits for consumers is that practices and procedures between states and territories will now be consistent. The new standards will for example minimise the disparity of interpretation of DNA samples.

Australia is taking a lead role in establishing forensic standardisation across the globe. Standards Australia has submitted a proposal to the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO)  for inclusion as an international standard.

The new standards cover

  • the recognition, recording, recovery, transport and storage of material;
  • analysis and examination of materials; and
  • minimizing risk of contamination in products used for DNA purposes.

The Standards Australia Technical Committee CH-041 has been working on developing these standards for a number of years and  will be publishing two more core standards in the next few months.

Consumers Federation of Australia representative Katina Michael has been active on this committee.