A well-trained dog can smell tiny amounts of gasoline in a burned house. Researchers have managed to find the limit of the sensitivity of their nose for the detection of this well known fire accelerator.
Dogs to spot traces of flammable liquids
during a fire investigation, a dog can be used to identify debris containing traces of flammable liquids – which may support the hypothesis that a fire was the result of an arson« , explains in & nbsp; Robin Abel, researcher in the chemistry department of the University of Alberta (Canada). » data-reactid = « 25 »> The sensitivity of the canine truffle is no longer to be demonstrated: when we rely on the efficiency of our 5 million olfactory receptors, dogs can count on 300 million of these cells . We are therefore no longer surprised by the multitude of areas in which their sense of smell is used: detection of diseases, explosives, drugs or even missing persons. But that’s not all : « during a fire investigation, a dog can be used to identify debris containing traces of flammable liquids – which may support the hypothesis that a fire was the result of an arson« , explains in Robin Abel, researcher in the chemistry department of the University of Alberta (Canada).
A study he conducted with his team and two dog-handler pairs specializing in the search for clues in burned places, made it possible to make several observations. The first dog was trained to detect many flammable liquids. The second was mostly trained with gasoline. The study reveals first of all that the non-specialized dog is well capable of detecting all fire accelerators while the other cannot generalize its detection to all flammable products when they are presented in very low concentration.
Dogs more efficient than laboratory tests
The researchers have also developed a special protocol to accurately assess the olfactory performance of these dogs. Thanks to the installation of a particular substrate, ultra clean revealing no other odor than that of the product studied – here the essence – the aut[…]
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