NFPA 921 Updates

To our valued clients and strategic partners,

As you may know, the latest edition of NFPA 921 (2021) was released to the general public in August 2020, with an effective date of April 25, 2020. The NFPA declared this edition “marks some of the most substantial changes since the original publication of the document.” Not the least among those changes was the removal of the fire classification system. While references are still made to “incendiary fire causes”, “accidental fire causes”, “natural fire causes”, and “undetermined fire causes” in the document, the NFPA no longer endorses a classification system for which to group fire causes.

Among the reported reasons for this decision were to avoid conflict with other classification systems, allow for more accurate data to be collected for the National Fire Incident Report System (NFIRS) and other systems, and the lack of prescribed methodology in previous editions for inferring the intent of actions that lead to fires.

Donan is dedicated to remaining on the forefront of the fire investigation industry. Therefore, effective December 1, 2020, our Fire Investigation division is no longer classifying fire causes in our verbal and written reports. This change will prompt the removal of the fire classification bullet at the end of our written reports and removal of the fire classification definition appendix. Other than these changes, you’ll continue to receive the thorough inspection and report from the Donan Fire Investigation team that you’re accustomed to.

We appreciate your continued confidence Donan and welcome any questions you have surrounding this update.