Academic and Professional Qualifications:

BSc Industry Chemistry - City University, London
PhD Combustion Research - City University, London
CChem Chartered Chemist
MRSC Member of the Royal Society of Chemistry
FIFireE Fellow of the Institution of Fire Engineers
MEI Member of the Energy Institute


Chris joined Burgoynes in 1972 after completing his PhD on factors influencing the risk of accidental ignition of naval fuels. He investigates fires, explosions and hazardous chemical incidents worldwide, in both land and marine environments. His land-based investigations range from major incidents involving petrochemical and chemical plants and depots to those involving domestic premises and household appliances. His marine investigations include all types of vessel, including passenger ships, VLCCs, chemical tankers, general cargo and bulk carriers, container ships, dredgers and pipe laying barges. He has investigated incidents resulting from engine room and accommodation fires, explosions and missile strikes and those involving crude oil, other petroleum products, LPG, chemicals, pesticides and containerised cargoes. Notable investigations include the Flixborough disaster, the King’s Cross underground fire, the fire on the cruise liner ROMANTICA, the fire in the Mont Blanc vehicle tunnel and the Buncefield explosion. Chris has also assisted in the resolution of live cargo fires and has advised on cargo quality and contamination disputes.

Chris has investigated carbon monoxide fatalities and poisonings caused by both flueless and flued gas and oil-fired domestic appliances, and has supervised tests on appliances in connection with such incidents.

Chris frequently gives evidence as an expert witness in both the High Court and criminal courts in the UK. He has also given expert testimony in Greece, Ireland, Singapore, South Africa and China. Chris has published numerous technical papers in the academic and general press, and has also contributed a chapter in the textbook The Forensic Investigation of Explosions. He regularly lectures on the scientific investigation of fires and explosions for universities. He has chaired a task-group of the Arson Control Forum Intervention Group that reviews protocols for investigating fires of suspicious origin and fire investigation training on a national scale. Chris is a member of the Arson Prevention Forum Committee.