Neil Ralston CFE, CFEI, CFVI, CFII

Senior Associate, Fire & Electrical

Our Associates perform on-site investigations to determine origin and cause of complex losses. Their process: examine and collect evidence, take on-site photos, interview witnesses, conduct testing in our lab and analyze data to produce technical reports that are clear and concise.

 

EXPERT SUMMARY

Mr. Ralston is a senior Associate with the Fire team at -30 – Forensic Engineering. Neil specializes in fire and explosion investigations and has 21 years’ experience working for the Metropolitan police in London, England and the Edmonton Police Service in Alberta. Post policing Neil specialized in complex multi -agency large loss fire investigations for the insurance industry prior to being promoted to lead the team. In 2013 Neil obtained his Certified fire and Explosion Investigator and Certified Vehicle Fire Investigator and the Certified fire investigator instructor designations as well as becoming a certified Fraud examiner. To date, Neil has investigated approximately 300 residential, commercial and vehicle fires/explosions as well as other non-fire
related complex losses. He is a member of the International Association of Arson Investi gators (IAAI) and the National Association of Fire Investigators (NAFI) as well as the association of certified fraud examiners (ACFE).

SPECIALIZED PROFESSIONAL COMPETENCIES

  • Certified fire, explosion and vehicle fire investigator
  • Certified Fraud Examiner
  • 21 years of investigation experience investigated over 300 residential, commercial and vehicle fire explosions

ACADEMIC BACKGROUND

A-Levels, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Mid Kent College, Chatham, England, 1997 – 2000
Professional Study in Information Technology and Computer Systems, University of London, London, England, 1997 - 2000
St. John Fisher Catholic Comprehensive School, Chatham, England, 1993 - 1996

ADDITIONAL COURSES

Chartered Insurance Professional Certification (CIP), Present
Certified Fraud Examiner (ACFE), 2013
Certified Vehicle Fire Investigator and Certified Fire and Explosion Investigator, NAFI, 2013
Certified Fire Investigation Instructor, NAFI, 2019

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

30 Forensic Engineering
Senior Associate – Fire & Electrical Investigations
2021 – Present, Toronto, ON

  • Investigating fire and explosion, structural and vehicular

Aviva Insurance Company of Canada
Manager, Technical, Complex Claims – Aviva Verify
2019 - 2021, National

  • Drafted, implemented and updated new and current policy and procedure, safety guidelines and instructed compliance and standards that adhere and fall in line with NFPA 921 and 1033
  • Managed a team of six, processing complex fraudulent claims and/or policy concerns as it relates to large loss complex fire claims
  • Oversee, maintain and develop external origin and cause experts to meet litigation ready obligations and reports

Aviva Insurance Company of Canada
Senior Investigator, Fraud Management, Fire Loss
2016 - 2019, National

  • Investigated large loss commercial and residential fires over $750,000
  • Reviewed all origin and cause independent investigators and worked in collaboration with multiple stakeholders to determine the cause
  • Implemented training to front line loss adjusters and investigators on fire loss, continuity, evidence handling and scene handling

Alberta Motor Association
Field Investigator, Special Investigations Unit
2013 - 2016, Calgary, Alberta

  • Liaise with RCMP, local Police departments and independent experts to investigate varied P and C insurance claims such as bodily injury, theft, fire and hit and run-in order to detect fraud
  • Developed scoring systems to identify fraud in the early stages of a claim submission
  • Carried out field investigations without support or supervision, utilizing effective time and workload management
  • Conduct thorough investigations while managing all interactions to the highest standards of customer satisfaction
  • Coordinate assigned work with external claims investigators and vendors, delivered recommendations to claims handling colleagues and reported investigation findings with recommendations for approval, denial and future claims handling

Edmonton Police Service
Police Officer, Sergeant, Criminal Investigation Section
2006 - 2013, Edmonton, AB

  • Certified Canadian Police Dispatcher (emergency response)
  • Patrol Officer squad 2 West Division, Edmonton
  • Involved in many large files requiring high level of investigation
  • Completed conductive energy weapon training (taser)
  • Certified carbine operator and fully trained and able to use the moving mode radar
  • Canadian Traffic Education Centre (CTEC) Forensic Investigation training, collision investigator and scene reconstructionist
  • Interview and interrogation trained
  • Spousal violence responder/investigator
  • Trained in tactile communications for peace officers
  • Trained in leadership for safety excellence

Metropolitan Police Service
Police Officer
2001 – 2006, London, England

  • Patrolling a high crime rate area of the city and responding to dispatch calls to enforce laws and ensure public safety
  • Investigating criminal activity, interviewing victims, witnesses and suspects, preserving crime scenes, gathering evidence and arresting suspects
  • Advanced vulnerable sector interview procedures and techniques
  • Negotiator trained – operated as on call negotiator
  • Enforced traffic laws and investigated a large amount of serious traffic collisions
  • Writing of accurate and complete reports
  • Introduced neighborhood watch programs
  • Served on prisoner process team, arson unit, anti-terrorism team
  • Assisted with recruiting
  • Advanced police driver, including motorcycle and police support units
  • Public order advanced driver, including defensive and aggressive driving techniques
  • Arrest team and rapid entry training, door enforcer training and major incidents and scene preservation training as well as first responder trained to terrorism response
  • Assisted in many major riots, Noting Hill carnival, May Day riots and many football games, Riot Officer Class 1

PROFESSIONAL SOCIETIES AND ASSOCIATIONS

  • Member – International Association of Arson Investigators (IAAI)
  • Member – National Association of Fire Investigators (NAFI)
  • Member – Certified Fraud Examiners association (CFE)

PRESENTATIONS

  • Fire Training (2019) 3-day Presentation on Rebuttal, Refute and ongoing Fire Training from Assignment to File Submission
  • Aviva Canada, Ontario (2018) Large Loss Property Presentation, Fire Dynamics, First Responders and Scene Continuity
  • Adjuster Presentation (2017), Red Flags & Concerns during Claim Submission
  • Insurance Institute of Southern Alberta (2016) Inside Information to Origin and Cause
 

NEWS / INSIGHTS / EVENTS