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U.S. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs National Institute of Justice
NT OF J US
Forensic Laboratories: Handbook for Facility Planning, Design, Construction, and Moving
N BJ A C E I OF F
IJ J O F OJJ D P B RO J US T I C E P
National Institute of Justice Department of Justice National Institute of Standards and Technology Department of Commerce
S G OVC RA MS
U. S. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs 810 Seventh Street N.W. Washington, DC 20531 Janet Reno Attorney General U.S. Department of Justice Raymond C. Fisher Associate Attorney General Laurie Robinson Assistant Attorney General Noël Brennan Deputy Assistant Attorney General Jeremy Travis Director, National Institute of Justice
Office of Justice Programs World Wide Web Site: http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov
National Institute of Justice World Wide Web Site: http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/nij
Design.S. and Moving Law Enforcement and Corrections Standards and Testing Program Coordinated by Office of Law Enforcement Standards National Institute of Standards and Technology Gaithersburg.U. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs National Institute of Justice Forensic Laboratories: Handbook for Facility Planning. MD 20899–0001 April 1998 NCJ 168106 . Construction.
The National Institute of Justice is a component of the Office of Justice Programs. Department of Justice. Boyd. This report was prepared with the assistance of the Office of Law Enforcement Standards (OLES) of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) under the direction of Alim A. Program Manager for Chemical Systems and Materials. . 94–IJ–R–004. which also includes the Bureau of Justice Assistance. David G. Fatah. Findings and conclusions of the research reported here are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official position or policies of the U. and Office for Victims of Crime. Project No. The work was sponsored by the National Institute of Justice. Office of Science and Technology. 97–0101A. Director of OLES. Bureau of Justice Statistics. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.National Institute of Justice Jeremy Travis Director This technical effort to develop this report was conducted under Interagency Agreement No. Editorial support was provided by Aspen Systems Corporation. Director.S. and Kathleen M. Higgins.
................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 3 Executive Summary ............................................................................................................................................... 19 Construction ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 71 Appendix I: Description of Spaces by Laboratory Sections Appendix II: Laboratory Design Standards and Modules Appendix III: Forensic Computer Examination Laboratory Statement of Work Appendix IV: Move-in Plan Appendix V: Statement of Work for the Commercial Moving Services References iii ....... 5 Overview .................................................................................................................................................................... 7 Planning ............ 1 Technical Working Group ............. 51 Moving .................................................................................................................F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Table of Contents Foreword ................................................................................................................................................................. 9 Design ....................................... 59 Appendixes ........................
this project was funded by the National Institute of Standards and Technology/OLES. Forensic Laboratories: Handbook for Facility Planning. * * * * * One committee member. and Moving. 1997 Carrie Morgan Whitcomb Past President 1995–96 ASCLD 1 . 1935–February 28. Hartner February 10. Information on forensic laboratory design was one of the more frequently requested items. 1997. I received numerous requests for information on many topics. We hope that the resulting facilities will provide adequate space for forensic scientists to perform their very important tasks today and will include adaptability for tomorrow as technologies change. ensure the economical expenditure of resources. so each section has its own unique format. I requested assistance from Dr. Everyone deeply mourns his passing and applauds his personal achievements and the tremendous impact he had on forensic science. Design. Office of Law Enforcement Standards (OLES). and was commander of Metro-Dade’s Crime Laboratory Bureau. they provided support and direction throughout the development of this document. Construction. Under Dr. passed away on February 28. and created this handbook. who has served the forensic science community for 37 years. and develop a safe. is the product of a 2-day seminar where 23 professionals met. We therefore dedicate this document to the wonderful memory of : Dr. Additionally. The handbook is not a standard but a resource for those faced with building a new facility or the redesign of an existing facility. 1993–94. It is our hope that this document will help laboratory managers maximize organizational efficiency. where he had served since 1960. Rau’s direction and through the leadership of Kathleen Higgins. the work of the outside reviewers from Harley Ellington Design. He was past president of ASCLD. secure. Dr. William J. Richard Rau at the National Institute of Justice to develop such a document. The need for a document that dealt with the many aspects of building a new laboratory was obvious. I appreciate the time and effort the committee members and participants have given to this project. Director. William J. Each group had its own style. The document. and the editorial support of Aspen Systems Corporation. divided into four groups.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Foreword As president of the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors (ASCLD) during 1995–96. “Bill” Hartner. and well-designed facility.
McClaren & Wilson. Inc. Richard Rau National Institute of Justice Office of Science and Technology Dr. Selavka New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services Office of Forensic Services Michael R. Fatah NIST/OLES Frank Fitzpatrick** Orange County Sheriff/Coroner Forensic Science Services Dr. Kenneth G. DeBoer Earl Walls Associates San Diego. California Dr. Dennis Reeder NIST/Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory Biotechnology Division Earl Roberts FBI Laboratory Dr. Victor W. Weedn Department of Defense DNA Registry Carrie Whitcomb* U. Carl M. Dr. William Hartner* Laboratory Bureau Metro-Dade Police Department Kathleen M. ASCLD President-elect. Postal Inspection Service Crime Laboratory Joseph Wichmann Illinois State Police Joliet Forensic Science Laboratory Dan Wierec Walsh Construction Dr. ASCLD 3 . Michael Mount AIA Smith. Higgins NIST/OLES Dr. California Rich Tanton* Palm Beach Sheriff’s Department Crime Laboratory Dr. Jarzen Sacramento County Laboratory of Forensic Services John Klosterman Illinois State Police Forensic Sciences Command James L. D.C.S. Hinchman & Grylls Southwest Inc. Richard Wilk New York City Police Laboratory * ** Past President. Somin Earl Walls Associates San Diego. Alim A. Mitchell Holland Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory Robert Horn* Crime Laboratory New York State Police (Retired) Robert A. Inc. Hinchman & Grylls Washington.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Technical Working Group Victor Cardona Smith. McClaren Ruth and Going.
constructing. operational efficiency. it should be decided whether the project is driven primarily by needs or budget. The guidelines in this handbook are designed to empower laboratory managers to improve their situation.1 hazardous materials. biological science/DNA.2 At the beginning of the process. and moving crime labs. Maryland. and the buildings in which these services are provided tend to be expensive as well. ensure economical expenditure of resources. Crime labs must be designed with the flexibility to support adaptability and change or risk obsolescence in a few years. security of evidence. or trace evidence have specialized needs unique to their areas of work. humidity. firearms analysis. They are designed to safeguard the integrity and objectives of the profession. management. the National Institute of Justice (NIJ). with enhanced concern and special requirements involving environmental health and safety. and provide a safe working environment for employees. The guidelines serve as a general tool to which forensic laboratory directors can refer when considering building a new laboratory or refurbishing an existing one.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Executive Summary The measure of a forensic laboratory’s success is how well it meets the current and future needs of the occupants. temperature. the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)/Office of Law Enforcement Standards (OLES). maximize organizational efficiency. the scientists who will occupy the building should be involved with the design/build team to explain their special requirements for the laboratory. Quality laboratory service is expensive. There is not one universally correct plan for forensic laboratory design. be ready to defend those needs against questions that will arise because of the cost involved. From the start. or is the budget preset and the laboratory economically limited to a specific amount at the outset? The technical work performed in forensic laboratories must be able to withstand any evidentiary challenge. adaptability. preservation of evidence in an uncontaminated state. Designing and building a forensic laboratory is a complicated undertaking. and the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors (ASCLD) held a joint workshop November 13–14. Will the needs of the laboratory determine the budget. Highest performance standards are required for cleanliness. designing. 5 . Design issues include those considerations present when designing any building. Staff needs and functional processes are the driving factors. Flexibility is also a key element in driving a forensic laboratory’s design and configuration. to develop guidelines for planning. No two labs are the same. Technical laboratories such as toxicology. as well as budgetary concerns. When detailing the needs of the laboratory. 1996 at NIST in Gaithersburg. Cost-cutting that would jeopardize the lab’s testing quality cannot be an option. Ultra-clean rooms or higher levels of containment may be required for some analytical procedures. To help laboratory directors get through the process. and vibration controls to create an environment suitable for forensic science.
Every change has a potential financial consequence. Be ready for unforeseen issues that may affect construction such as subsurface conditions or obstructions. A forensic laboratory must be designed with the flexibility to change along with the needs of its occupants. translating and expanding the Needs Assessment into a form that will be used by architects and engineers in the design process. The future also needs to be considered. Hazardous materials handling and preservation of evidence are just two of the many variables that need to be considered. furnishings. and provides project cost data. Each laboratory’s situation is unique. dimension. evaluates the existing facility. Design. There is not one universally correct plan for forensic laboratory design. two documents frequently combined into one that form the baseline for the project. Changes to local and State regulations may also affect each construction project. Fixtures. Design will vary with each laboratory’s specific needs. from conception through opening day. 7 . design. careful planning and excellent communication among those involved are critical to success. move. Throughout the process. The key to a successful planning stage is the preparation of a Needs Assessment/Design Program. technology. and instrumentation are a few of the variables that generate space. The Needs Assessment/Design Program may initially be an idealized statement of requirements that will later need to be reconciled to the actual budget or resources available. An evaluation process and criteria to ensure that the contractors are qualified to complete the job as specified must be established. construction. The construction stage offers a last chance before occupancy to make changes to the proposed lab structure that were missed in the construction documents or during the planning and design stages. Following acceptance of bids and contract negotiation. the order in which they need to be accomplished. The Design Program provides a guide to design the project. Always keep in mind the date that the move needs to be completed. and adjacency requirements that impact the overall design. equipment. or scientific methodologies. Construction. Moving. Specific activities vary within each phase of the process. construction can begin in earnest. and each stage is discussed in detail in the following pages. The plan can be divided into premove. The Needs Assessment documents user and facility needs. Planning. Develop a strategic plan for the move.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Overview The process of constructing a new forensic laboratory revolves around four general activities: planning. and equipment will also need to be budgeted for and purchased. Some changes may be too costly to make. and postmove activities. and who is going to be responsible for them. Laboratory work must continue even as the shift is made from the old facility to the new. Phase and schedule move activities so that routine daily events occur as smoothly and efficiently as possible. and moving. defines space requirements. Functional requirements of specific scientific disciplines. Consider the tasks and activities.
assesses the existing facility. Presented in a question and answer format. Keep the document simple and straightforward—the people with budgetary authority need to understand it. 3. defines all space requirements. what do I do? ANSWER: Plan to develop an Architectural/Engineering Needs Assessment and Design Program. 9 . Careful planning is critical to success. It is crucial to take the necessary time on the front end of the process to gather this important information. The Needs Assessment documents the requirements for the facility. it covers the essential. basic elements of the planning process that directors need to know. 1. 2. The Design Program provides a guide to design the project. and accounts for external influences such as building codes. QUESTION: What is a Needs Assessment? ANSWER: [Definition] Needs Assessment—An essential planning tool that must be developed by independent professionals who have requisite experience that quantifies and evaluates operations and ultimately projects present and future requirements. the scientists who will occupy the building should be involved with the design/build team to explain their needs and special requirements for the laboratory. and future operations. Key to the planning stage is a Needs Assessment/Design Program. provides project cost data. and political tool. What follows is a suggested approach for forensic science laboratory directors to use for the planning stage. QUESTION: If my self-evaluation reveals the need for new/expanded space. QUESTION: I have a need for new facilities now—what do I need to do and where should I be heading to assure success? ANSWER: Perform a preliminary self-evaluation to define the “mission” of operations/organization and detail your current. developmental. Staff needs are the driving factor.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Planning Designing and building a forensic science laboratory can be an enormous undertaking. From the start. past. two documents frequently combined into one that form the baseline for the project and are used throughout the entire process. It assesses user and facility needs. The Needs Assessment is a planning.
5. • Data/Telecommunications.P L A N N I N G 4. QUESTION: What criteria need to be considered in the RFP? ANSWER: The criteria to be considered in the RFP should include: Health/Safety (Liability Issues). Crime Trends. etc. examples could include: • Laboratory representative. The Design Program defines design requirements and contains comprehensive information for the architect and engineers. QUESTION: What do I do to get the program started? ANSWER: Assemble an internal team to develop a Request for Proposals (RFP) for conducting an Architectural/Engineering Needs Assessment/Design Program. • Budget. location. Technologies (existing and projected new). these two documents are frequently combined into one. Existing Constraints: financial. then what? ANSWER: Assemble the best team to conduct an Architectural/Engineering Needs Assessment/Design Program. 10 . • Facilities. QUESTION: After the consultant selection is made. QUESTION: What is a Design Program? ANSWER: [Definition] Design Program—A document that translates and expands the Needs Assessment into a form that will be used by architects and engineers. 7. • Public works. • Contracts. personnel. Both the Needs Assessment and Design Program require extensive input from lab staff. Codes. 4 Client Representative/Steering Committee. • Security. 6. Identify Members of the Team.
Data Synthesis. • Operational needs.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K 4 Needs Assessment/Design Program Team. Show that the final product is not just a customer “wish list”— (provide justification for size/cost). not just management. 4 Assemble and organize data. 4 Users must be involved in process. renovations/expansion. 4 Develop data into usable and meaningful information. 11 . Data Gathering. • Architectural/Programmer/Engineer. Include answers to How big?. Site Evaluation/ Selection—where should the building be placed? 9. 4 Questionnaires. QUESTION: What is the process for developing the document that comes from the Needs Assessment/Design Program? ANSWER: There is a Three-Step Process for Needs Assessment/Design Program (the document). 4 Existing facilities assessment. 4 Management and staff interviews. Estimated cost?. 4 Draw conclusions and then test/check the Needs Assessment/ Design Study against: • Mission/goals. splitting operations. • Cost Consultant. QUESTION: What can I expect as I start the Needs Assessment/Design Program? ANSWER: The Needs Assessment/Design Program must: Demand full user/client participation. Establish a practical budget to use to retain the consultant team that will conduct the Architectural/Engineering Needs Assessment/Design Program (The Study). Result in resolving issues related to: expansion. • Others as needed—environmental/traffic. or building a new facility. Define the Duration of Program (Study). 8. 4 Comparable facility tours.
• Summary of legal issues. Technical Working Group on Materials (TWGMAT). 4 Summarize All Conclusions. • Area. 12 . 4 Review. • Resource constraints. 4 Introductory Statements. Executive Summary. 4 Mission Statement. • National technical working groups. • Testify in court.. correct. safety and security concerns. • Accreditation requirements. crime trends.P L A N N I N G • Standards. • Staff. etc. • What the project consists of. Document Preparation. engineers. operational codes. • Discuss chain-of-custody requirements. • Explain difficulty or impossibility of accomplishing mission under existing conditions. e. 10. consultants. 4 Introduces the Project. • Architect. • Statement of authorization to perform the study. and issue final document. liabilities. Technical Working Group on DNA Analysis Methods (TWGDAM). inability to meet codes. 4 Identification of the Team. • Assist investigations. 4 Description of Existing Facilities. 4 Acknowledgments.g. accreditation issues. QUESTION: What do the elements of the document include? ANSWER: Elements of the document should include: Preface. • Overcrowding. recent changes in technology. 4 Assemble synthesized data into a usable draft document. etc.
• Relate data to facility needs regarding expansion and flexibility. and Crime Trends. 13 . Population. Trends and Influences (demographics). • State all tasks accomplished to create the document. 4 Describe the Entire Facility in General Terms. Economic. • Describe in detail.” • Decision makers should be provided with all the information necessary to make informed decisions. • Needs Assessment. 4 Identify Methodology. 4 Relate Data to Staff and Facility Needs. Environmental. • Budget. 4 Three-Step Process. 4 Provides the “Bottom Line. • Relate data to individual and overall caseload. • Design Program. • Describe purpose. 4 State Goals and Objectives of the Study. • Chart is an introduction to descriptions of laboratory spaces. 4 Project Future Needs. 4 Organization Chart. Political. • Describe methodology. Facility and Space Descriptions.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Site.) 4 Describe Nomenclature and Acronyms. • Define both. • Relate data to new size and nature of facility and staff. 4 Analyze Emerging Social. That information should appear in the executive summary. • Show how trends affect individual laboratory sections and impact future requirements. Objectives and Methodology. (Provide as much narrative information as possible to tell the designers what is unique and unusual about the laboratory.
flexibility to expand. and Adaptability. Proximity access systems. • Provided so that design team will have better understanding. Need for expansion of facility. Security. plumbing. 4 Special Plumbing. Designer Guidelines—Define Special Requirements: covers architectural. Passage widths between laboratory benches. 4 Unusual or Unique Features. 4 Safety. Mechanical. 4 Crime Laboratory Sections. Site security features including landscape design. • Describe primary design objectives. and Structural.g. r r r r • Examples regarding adaptability. Passive security design features. 4 Overall Laboratory. 4 Space Data Sheets. Adaptability needs to be emphasized to allow for interior and exterior changes. 14 . ventilation.P L A N N I N G 4 Description of Spaces by Laboratory Sections (see Appendix I). and electrical design requirements and includes those design requirements necessary to implement the facility’s security strategy. Electronic security design features. • Explain that these sometimes are used in lieu of space descriptions and equipment data sheets. Need for flexibility in each section. • Examples regarding security. mechanical. DNA. • Describe purpose and function of each laboratory section. Electrical. r r r 4 Building and Site. • Examples regarding safety: r r r Fume hoods and biological safety cabinets. e. Emergency deluge shower and eyewashes.. Growth trends in forensic science.
State requirements. • Work flow. • Is the site acceptable in terms of its location? • Is the proper and required access to the site available? 4 Assessment of Existing Physical Features and Conditions. 4 External—Relationship to Client. Site Analysis (NOTE: Issues associated with site analysis may require a more extensive or separate document). • Geotechnical analysis. • Rock outcroppings.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Space Standards. 4 Generic Office or Nonlaboratory Standards. 4 Present and Future Equipment. 4 Define Milestones. • Topography. 4 Laboratory Space Standards (customary—Federal requirements. etc. 15 . • Vegetation. Move-in and Future Staff Needs.g. • Surveys. • Evidence flow. county requirements. 4 Internal—Define what components/sections of the building need to be placed next to each other. Equipment Data Sheets. 4 Define Milestones. 4 Location and Access Analysis. Adjacencies. Medical Examiners/ Law Enforcement/District Attorney/Courts/etc. Move-in and Future Space Needs.). 4 Manufacturer’s Data/Field Examination of Equipment/ Manufacturer’s Specifications. • Promotion of staff interaction(s)/interactions with supervisor(s). e. • Compartmentalization/public access.
Industrial Emissions. • Fence enclosures and security gates. 4 Multistory vs. 4 Incinerator Study. 4 Site Security Issues. • Evidence delivery parking. • Practical parking needs (safety. 4 Public Access. Special Studies—Examples To Include. • Highways—easily accessed. pollen. • Dining/restaurants. • Practical issues: leaves. 4 Other “On-Site Resources” or Proximities. 16 . • University resources.. 4 Outdoor Air Quality Issues—e.g. • Lodging. 4 Environmental Impact.). • Codes and ordinances. • Secured parking.P L A N N I N G 4 Analysis of Building Coverage and Location on the Site. • Training academy. etc. 4 Protection from Terrorist Access and Proximity. 4 Landscape Requirements. etc. • Public transportation. • Where is the best location on the site for the building? 4 Parking Requirements. • In terms of security. • Site CCTV surveillance. Single-Story Building. • Allowable coverage per codes and ordinances. • Conference facilities. 4 Who Are My Neighbors?—Various Considerations/Public Relations. 4 Construction Phasing Analysis.
This ratio refers to gross square feet. • Professional estimator provides complete take-off estimate. In “Forensic Sciences Progress 5” (Springer-Verlag.03 to 92. 11. mechanical rooms. for each technical and support staff member. the ratio of 92. laboratories with large amounts of low occupant space. that this ratio represents only a very loose rule of thumb that can be drastically affected by a number of variables. and therefore. • Impacts on staff. It must be understood. 1991). toilet rooms. For example. The only way to fully and accurately assess space needs is through the Needs Assessment and Design Program process. This ratio for most new facilities tends to fall within the range of 65. etc. accounts for a prorated portion of circulation corridors. • How to move people. • Simple estimate based on estimated cost per square foot.90 m2 (700 to 1000 ft2) per staff member. 4 Square Footage Cost Estimate.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K 4 Migration Studies.. 17 . Alternatives). QUESTION: How can I get just a rough idea of how big my crime lab should be? ANSWER: Over the past 5 to 10 years the numerous forensic laboratories that have been designed and constructed seem to point to a space ratio based on area per staff member.90 m2 (1000 ft2) per staff member is offered as a recommended standard. 4 Materials and Systems Take-Off Cost Estimate. such as evidence storage or vehicle examination bays. will unrealistically skew the ratio. however. lobbies. Establish a Reasonable Construction Budget (Range of Costs. not net square feet.
During review of this section. There is not one universally correct plan for a forensic laboratory design. In recent years. rooms. there may be other characteristics that are considered unique to a particular laboratory. equipment. The success and efficiency of a forensic laboratory depends on designing a layout that supports and optimizes the individual laboratory’s particular fields of expertise. Adaptability in a laboratory is a function of how the buildings. Functional requirements of scientific disciplines. and systems can grow and change with the needs of its occupants. Flexibility should be a key element in driving a forensic laboratory’s design and configuration. elements of the site design must also be addressed in order to ensure a successfully designed forensic laboratory facility. Although different laboratories possess many identical and similar characteristics. over the past 2 years scientific advancement in the field of DNA research has forced forensic laboratories to adapt to new designs in order to decrease the risk of contamination and ensure the accuracy of technical data. It cannot be overemphasized that the design standards presented herein are merely recommended guidelines. and adjacency requirements that affect the overall design. For example. or administrative policy (for example. while 19 . a regional laboratory facility might be located on a spacious rural site. and firearms analysis have specific needs unique to their specialized areas of work. one message in particular has been made clear to the scientific. technical laboratories such as toxicology. and building industry professions: Today’s forensic laboratories must be designed with the flexibility to support adaptability and change. Although the laboratory building presents some very complex and challenging design issues. For example. architectural.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Design Introduction A variety of functional elements can drive the architectural and engineering designs of a forensic laboratory. dimension. while another might be doing only PCR). one laboratory might require that all in-process evidence be returned to a central vault at the end of the day. The uniqueness of a laboratory is generally dictated by differing laboratory procedures (for example. and even landscaping have implications regarding the efficiency and security of the overall site and building design. biological science. yet in some instances sites might be completely dissimilar. one laboratory might be doing both Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism (RFLP) and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) procedures in their DNA analysis. forensic laboratories must be capable of embracing the future. As science and technology advance. For example. while another might allow for it to be stored in individual lockers within the laboratory work space). the reader is encouraged to refer to the Laboratory Design Standards and Modules document found in Appendix II. or risk falling into obsolescence. and instrumentation are just a few of the variables that generate space. proximity of secured and unsecured parking areas. Issues such as site access. as individual cases will differ according to the needs of the users. Building site conditions and characteristics might also show similarities from one laboratory to another.
• Parking design. acts of sabotage. Tall evergreens with branches less than 1. dumpster replacement.61 m (2 ft) to 1. The designers must review all of these recommended design guidelines with appropriate laboratory staff to determine their applicability to that particular laboratory. Level 3.D E S I G N another laboratory might occupy space in a high-rise urban building. biological and toxic waste pickup. Fenced area for use by persons having business at the facility. the design of parking areas should consider site security requirements. burglars. • • 20 . partially secured. Visitor parking located near the visitors’ entrance to the building allowing entry and departure without security barriers. Staff parking area secured 24 h. and staff could park in the level 2 parking area. 0.83 m (6 ft) high. • Site lighting. 4 It is desirable that the site be designed with access from at least two directions to ensure access to the site despite traffic conditions. Site Design • Site access. this level might be eliminated. The following types of landscape design should be avoided: • • • Dense shrubbery within 3.52 m (5 ft) above grade. surrounded by a security fence. For example. Level 2. 4 The site lighting should be designed to enhance security and discourage vandalism and unauthorized entry. Access for shipping and receiving must comply with code requirements without compromising site security. Vehicle impound parking with limited personnel access and monitored security systems. 4 Like landscaping. The area should be gated. unsecured. • Landscape design. shipping and receiving. Large clusters of shrubbery. The following are recommended levels of security for parking: • • Level 1. or other unforeseen site disruptions. and saboteurs from hiding in the landscaping until after dark. Access might be through the level 1 parking area. and the gate may be left open during business hours and locked after hours. street maintenance work. and evidence delivery. 4 Coordinate with laboratory staff and local authorities to ensure emergency access for fire department and other emergency vehicles. and accessible by use of a proximity or card key device. secured. 4 Landscaping should be designed to enhance site security by preventing potential vandals. Lighting comparable to that of a college campus offering night classes might serve as a guideline. • Emergency and service access. Level 4.048 m (10 ft) of the building or any security fence. high security. Depending on security policy.
such as concrete or fully grouted masonry. parking garages. • Laboratory tours. bulk chemical storage spaces. 4 If the facility is to be designed to accommodate guided tours. 4 Windows. Windows should be installed flush with the exterior surface of the wall. 4 Window sill design. 4 Locate in areas inaccessible to the public. such as in secured fenced areas. 4 Administrative or security receptionist at visitors’ access should be protected behind bullet-resistant glazing with adjacent walls of similar bullet-resistive construction. provide a sloped exterior sill to prevent the placement of explosives at the window. This is a feature designed to enhance safety of personnel by allowing those in one laboratory space to view the activities of those in other spaces that might be of a more hazardous nature. tour groups should not be allowed into the laboratory spaces. • HVAC intakes. 4 Materials. 4 If located in parking areas. Design to prevent the possibility of someone introducing a tear gas canister into the intake. • Duress alarms. and clandestine lab storage and exam spaces. weapons ranges. Reflective and/or bullet-resistant glazing where exposed to public view. design to prevent introduction of vehicle exhaust.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K General Building Design • Exterior walls. or if recessed. 4 It is recommended that the use of windows between laboratory spaces be maximized. 4 “Call assistance” or duress/panic alarms should be installed in key areas throughout the facility and concealed as appropriate. Locations might include visitor reception desk. 4 Locate away and upwind from fume hood exhaust. 21 . • Interior glazing. Bullet-resistant. • Visitor access protection. Guided tours should be conducted through the main corridor system with viewing through strategically placed windows in the corridor walls providing viewing into the laboratory spaces.
914 m (36 in) wide active leaf and an 0. building users. security staff. walk-in cooler compressors. 4 Freight elevator doors minimum 1. minimum. 4 Primary circulation and exit corridors: 1. Security Design • Security Strategy Meeting. types of security electronics systems. depending on the location and function of the lab.22 m (48 in) wide. Specific considerations regarding hardening the laboratory against terrorist attack may be important. 4 Although this is not a design guideline.457 m (18 in) wide inactive leaf. it is recommended that a security strategy meeting take place upon completion of an approved schematic design of the building and the site. and water purification filters. site and building access as related to security. • Corridors. the electrical engineer. the architect. and any other special security needs that might be identified by the users. security policy and procedural issues. 4 Equipment and systems that are part of the building and might require periodic service and maintenance should be located outside of the laboratory spaces. 4 Such equipment and systems might include. VAV controls. 4 Double doors to all laboratory sections and spaces that are expected to receive oversized evidence or equipment. This security strategy will act as a guideline for the design of passive and electronic security systems. 4 The purpose of this meeting is to establish and document a comprehensive security strategy for the new facility.83 m (6 ft) wide. This strategy should include. 22 . / 4 Secondary circulation and non-exit corridors: 1. and particularly outside of any space where evidence or drug standards are stored. Double doors shall consist of a 0.37 m (41 2 ft) wide. This meeting should be attended by representatives of the building owner. ASCLD/Laboratory Accreditation Board (LAB) accreditation issues related to security.D E S I G N • Equipment and systems service and maintenance. VAV boxes. but are not limited to. performance requirements for security access systems. but not be limited to. electrical panels. • Doors. minimum. and a security design consultant.
etc. 4 The security design of the facility should include consideration of such special features as: • • • Motion detection in evidence storage spaces. or other key areas. and evidence delivery areas. • Closed circuit television (CCTV) systems. DEA guidelines for the storage of narcotics. 4 Biologically hazardous spaces. Key areas might include. 4 PCR amplification room(s). Mechanical Systems Design Checklist • Isolation of various spaces. 4 Key doors throughout the building. The system must prevent unauthorized entry while maintaining safe and legal exiting. should be electronically monitored for open/closed status. should be kept under video surveillance. time lapse recording. particularly exterior doors and doors to evidence storage spaces. circulation corridors. but are not limited to. • Door status monitoring. and should fully document all access attempts. 4 The design of the building should incorporate a security perimeter within which unauthorized persons may enter under an “escort only” policy. zoom. should be provided with controlled access through the use of proximity or card-key access systems. tilt. • Door access systems. 23 . exterior doors. parking lots. The system should be capable of programming access devices for specific areas and times.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Escort only design. constant sweep. as well as key zones of the building. 4 The sign-in and badging area should be located at the visitors’ entrance. lobby/reception areas. Placement of CCTV cameras and features (pan. • Special security design features. 4 Access to and circulation throughout the facility. This security perimeter should be defined during the Security Strategy Meeting. 4 Key areas of the building. This security must be maintained in multistory buildings having shared elevator access. both interior and exterior.) should be defined during the Security Strategy Meeting. Additional security protection for storage of high-value evidence items such as money and jewelry.
helium. 4 Hydrogen. 4 Firing range. • Laboratory gas types. • Water treatment systems. Plumbing Systems Design Checklist • Emergency shower and eyewashes and floor drains. • Differential pressure of adjacent spaces. • Caustic (acid/alkali) waste systems. 4 Other spaces with heat-generating equipment.e. 4 Verify need per local authorities. • Firing range exhaust. argon. 4 Manifolded instrument gas systems. air. 4 Point-of-use type 1 water polisher. 4 Laboratory compressed air. 4 Verify need for positive and negative pressure spaces. 4 Central instrument gas distribution systems. 24 . • Supplemental cooling. 4 In areas of refuge. 4 In laboratory spaces.. i. • Fume hood and biological hood plumbing utilities. 4 Recirculating deionized water. • Evidence drying room exhausts. • HEPA filtered exhausts. 4 Special handling for putrid items.D E S I G N 4 Mitochondrial DNA room(s). neutralization/hazardous waste systems. nitrogen. 4 Instrument rooms.
but not limited to. All refrigerators and freezers. 4 Recommend one duplex outlet per 92. Consider small gas cylinders stored beneath fume hood. including electronic security systems and telephones. 4 Scanning electron microscope room(s). Photography darkroom(s). 4 Instrumentation rooms. Electrical Systems Design Checklist • Emergency generator. • Dry fire suppression systems. • • Rarely used in most modern forensic laboratories. laboratory instrumentation. Entire security section.90 m2 (1000 ft2) and 25 percent lighting for the following spaces: • • All technical laboratory. including walk-in units. 4 Minimal emergency power and lighting per applicable codes: • Uninterruptable power supply (UPS). X-ray processing room(s). 4 All computer-driven systems and equipment including.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K 4 Laboratory vacuum. Laboratory Information Management 25 . 4 Consider hydrogen generators to avoid NFPA gas plumbing requirements. 4 Computer room(s). 4 Recommend emergency power and lighting for the following spaces: • • • • • Entire evidence section. examination. 4 In fume hoods and biological hoods. 4 At laboratory benches. and investigation spaces. 4 Natural gas. Combined DNA Identification System (CODIS). 4 At scanning electron microscope. 4 In instrumentation rooms. • Laboratory gas locations. All other spaces in the building not identified above. Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS).
D E S I G N System (LIMS). and LABNET. / 4 3. 4 Class II. • Bench power. and color temperatures with users. B2. 26 . 4 Stainless steel in spaces where biologically contaminated evidence is to be placed on the work surface. 4 Class A. 4 General: single outlets at 0. • Bench top work surfaces.81 cm (11 2-in) thick laminated maple in physical examination spaces such as firearms shop and vehicle examination work bench. 4 Special bench power requirements to be verified. • Biological hoods. or duplex outlets at 0. lunch room. toilet rooms. 4 Central UPS system is preferred. 4 Verify locations with users. General Laboratory Design • Fume hoods. depending on specific application. 4 Chemical resistant plastic laminate in all other laboratory spaces not identified above. types. chemical fume hood with remotely located exhaust blower. but local UPS units are acceptable. Integrated Ballistic Imaging System (IBIS). 4 Standard plastic laminate in nonlaboratory spaces such as offices.457 m (18 in) on centers. etc. Drugfire. or B3. with remotely located exhaust blower. types A. • Local light level control. 4 Verify locations. • Task lighting. 4 Epoxy resin in laboratory spaces where fume hood or chemically rated biological hood is installed. conference rooms.914 m (36 in) on centers.
paper towels. 4 Provide cabinetry for storage of soap.95 m2 (64 ft2). 4 Locate between “clean” and “dirty” spaces.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Laboratory sinks. • Clean sink areas. 27 . 4 Shall contain all the features of the clean sink areas described above. 4 Provide lab coat hangers. depending on local authority and plumbing design. • Hands-free sinks. or holding vessels. 4 Used only to wash hands upon leaving a laboratory section. all other locations stainless steel. 4 Shall be designed as an interlock between clean and dirty spaces with air handled through differential pressurization to prevent exfiltration of contaminated air. • Caustic (acid/alkali) waste plumbing. 4 Recommended minimum of 12 to 15 air changes per hour. 4 Epoxy resin in epoxy resin countertops. • Evidence drying rooms. 4 Located at the entrance to every laboratory section. rubber gloves. 4 Verify other special locations with users. • Biovestibules. for example. 4 At all epoxy resin sinks and fume hood cup sinks. 4 At all clean sinks. 4 May include dilution system. direct exhaust to exterior. 4 Minimum size: 5. 4 Washable finishes. and other protective garments as determined necessary by the users. neutralizing filters. between main circulation corridor and entrance to a laboratory section that potentially contains hazardous airborne contaminants.
Chemical spill containment. 4 Acoustics. 4 Laboratory floors. bulk drug analysis.D E S I G N • Bulk chemical and clandestine lab evidence storage rooms. plastic laminate acceptable. 4 Exhaust system to expel both heavier. 4 Maximize use of flexible laboratory casework systems. Epoxy in all spaces considered highly biologically or chemically hazardous. or the equivalent file storage space. such as examination rooms. 28 . 4 Vibration-proof flooring. • • • • Finishes. • Special considerations. 4 Nonlaboratory spaces. and bulk chemical storage. Suspended acoustical in all other spaces. Blowout panel. Explosion-proof electrical fixtures. Semi-gloss latex enamel in all other spaces. • Laboratory casework. • Files.and lighter-than-air vapors. and bulk chemical storage. should be provided for each analyst at the area of the nonlaboratory workstation. 4 Steel or wood preferred. • • • • • • Chemical-resistant sheet vinyl or vinyl tiles with welded seams. Epoxy in all spaces considered highly biologically or chemically hazardous. Acceptable interior finish standards for offices and nonlaboratory support spaces. 4 Laboratory ceilings. one four-drawer filing cabinet. 4 Standard laboratory casework with utility access space behind base cabinets. 4 High-strength flooring. bulk drug analysis. 4 Reflective surfaces. such as examination rooms. 4 Laboratory walls. 4 Generally.
F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Technical Laboratory Sections General Design Comments The forensic laboratory consists of various laboratories within the overall facility. such as document and latent print examiners. The recommended guidelines provided here are intended to serve as checklists for the design of laboratory space in the technical laboratory sections. Controlled Substance Section • Main Controlled Substances Laboratory Space. The adjacent supporting spaces will be spaces devoted to specific procedures or equipment items and that might be used by each analyst from time to time during the course of his or her examinations. 4 Individual analyst laboratory workstation. Administrative Work Spaces Each laboratory section will identify various nonlaboratory work spaces. Other items may or may not be necessities. With the exception of the supervisors’ offices. In some instances area (m2. away from the hazards of the laboratory. which shall be private offices. Some analysts. equipment. all other spaces in the administrative work area can be designed as open office systems workstations. and instrumentation that are listed to remind designers of needs that should be considered when designing a layout. A significant amount of the forensic analyst’s responsibilities include nonlaboratory tasks such as data analysis. Supervisors’ offices. Included are functional areas. and other administrative responsibilities. The main laboratory is where each analyst will have an individual laboratory workstation. Items and areas that are not assigned measurements will vary as needed by individual laboratories and the sections within those laboratories. This theme consists of the concept of a main laboratory space for each section. depending upon the needs and size of individual laboratory sections. These various laboratories are commonly referred to as laboratory sections or units. Individual spot ventilation or fume hood. Many of the items listed. The design should provide the analyst with an administrative work area.57 m (15 lin ft) bench space per analyst. 29 . and space for files can also be included in this environment. such as laboratory workstations. For most laboratory sections the checklist below follows a common theme. require additional administrative work space since a significant amount of their technical examinations can occur outside of the laboratory environment. court testimony preparation. are universal components of technical sections. case review areas. Sink (may be shared between two analysts). ft) of bench space have been assigned to represent minimum guidelines for space requirements. Individual in-process secure evidence storage. where these tasks can be conducted in an efficient and safe environment. report writing. • • • • 4. ft2) of floor space or linear footage (lin m. and supporting spaces that are enclosed rooms with direct adjacency to the main laboratory.
4 Glassware washer with bench space for glassware sorting. 4 Secure storage units. 4 Adequate ports for computers/workstations. 4 Fume hood(s) with solvent and separate acid/alkali storage base cabinets. 4 Free access space to the rear of each instrument for maintenance and utility access. 4 Lab refrigerator. 4 Bench space as required for specific equipment and procedures. 4 Chemical layout bench space. • Evidence storage room. and sink. 4 Double sink. 4 Dry fire suppression system. 30 . 4 May be separate room or may be part of the main laboratory space. 4 Shelving for the storage of references and manuals. 4 Instrument maintenance space within the instrument room with fume hood. • Reagent preparation. 4 Floor space for refrigerators and other lab equipment as required. 4 Bench space for each instrument with adjacent layout bench space. 4 Flammable materials storage refrigerator.D E S I G N 4 Miscellaneous bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures. • Instrumentation room. • Standards storage room. 4 Vibration-isolation benches as required for analytical balances. 4 As required in addition to in-process storage in workstations. solvent storage.
4 Analyst’s administrative workstation: 5. 4 Bench space for each instrument with adjacent layout bench space. 4 Type of robotics equipment and apparatus will dictate space and utility requirements. • Instrumentation room. • Administrative work spaces. 4 Special processing of waste may be required. • Other considerations. 4 May be separate room or may be part of the main laboratory space. 31 . 4 Miscellaneous bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures.95 m2 (64 ft2) per analyst. 4 Case review: space for small table and chairs where three or four analysts can confer informally. Individual spot ventilation. 4 Light-free room for alternate-light viewing.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Robotics. • Main Toxicology Laboratory Space. 4 Stand-alone specimen processing room may be required in addition to analyst workstations. 4 Supervisor’s office: 11. 4 Individual analyst laboratory workstation. while ensuring no crosscontamination from the drug section. 4 Free access space to the rear of each instrument for maintenance and utility access. Individual in-process secure evidence storage. or biological hood.57 m (15 lin ft) bench space per analyst. 4 Large bulk seizures. Toxicology Section • Design as biologically hazardous space with biovestibule. fume hood. Sink (may be shared between two analysts). • • • • 4. 4 Dry fire-suppression systems.48 m2 (120 ft2). depending on operation and accreditation requirements.
4 Glasswares washer with bench space for glassware sorting. 4 Bench space as required for equipment and procedures. 4 Double sink.D E S I G N 4 Instrument maintenance space within the instrument room with fume hood. 4 Dry fire-suppression system. 4 11. • Refrigerated storage. 4 Fume/biological hood. 4 Type of robotics equipment and apparatus will dictate space and utility requirements. 4 Chemical layout bench space. 4 May be walk-in refrigerator and/or freezer. 4 As required in addition to in-process evidence storage in workstations. 4 May be separate room or may be part of the main laboratory space. 4 Flammable materials storage refrigerator. 32 . 4 Sink. 4 Bench space as required for specific equipment and procedures. 4 Adequate ports for computers/workstations. 4 Shelving for the storage of references and manuals. and sink. • Robotics. 4 Fume hood(s) with solvent and separate acid/alkali storage base cabinets. solvent storage. • Radioimmunoassay room. 4 May be refrigerators in main laboratory space or in separate room. • Reagent preparation.48 m2 (120 ft2). 4 May be separate room or may be part of the main laboratory space.
4 Minimum length.48 m2 (120 ft2).438 m (8 ft). 33 . 4 Case review: space for small table and chairs where three or four analysts can confer informally.096 m (20 ft). 4 Ventilation for airborne unspent powder and lead/metal particulates (see OSHA and NIOSH regulations). 4 1. 2. • Main Firearms/Toolmarks Laboratory Space.192 m (40 ft).86 m (75 ft). 4 Individual analyst laboratory workstation. 6. 4 Analyst’s administrative workstation: 5. 4 Supervisor’s office: 11. 4 Light level control. 4 Some users may prefer individual microscopes in their individual workstations.57 m (15 lin ft) bench space per analyst (6. Sink (may be shared between two or more analysts). 4 Acoustically designed for containment and absorption of sound. 4 2. optimum length 22. Individual in-process secure evidence storage. optimum width. • Comparison microscopy room. • Test fire range. 4 Floor space for refrigerators and other lab equipment as required.95 m2 (64 ft2) per analyst. 4 Minimum width. 12.524 lin m (5 lin ft) per microscope (allow for attachment of power and light sources). Firearms/Toolmarks Section • Design as biologically hazardous space with biovestibule. • • • 4.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Administrative work spaces.438 lin m (8 lin ft) bench for weapon layout.1 m [20 lin ft] if individual comparison microscope is included). 4 Miscellaneous bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures.
D E S I G N • Projectile recovery room. 4 Drill press. 4 Server(s) associated with automation platform. 4 Biological hood(s). (Note: could be part of chemistry lab. • Gunshot residue room. 4 Grinder. if applicable. 4 Acoustically designed for containment and absorption of sound. 4 Might be part of the main laboratory space. 4 Ventilated cotton box. 4 Additional bench space as required for evidence layout and equipment. • Chemistry lab. 4 Dedicated phone line(s) and additional data ports as required. 4 Drugfire workstation(s). 4 Compressed air. 34 . 4 Additional bench space as required for tools and equipment. 4 Ventilated test fire container. 4 Fume hood(s) with solvent and separate acid/alkali storage base cabinets. 4 Sink(s). • Computer room. 4 IBIS workstation(s). 4 Ventilated water tank. 4 Tools storage. 4 Sink. • Toolmarks shop.) 4 Biovestibule entry.
4 Stainless steel examination surface (bench or mobile table). 4 Case review: space for small table and chairs where three or four analysts can confer informally. Individual in-process secure evidence storage. • Ammunition storage room. • Standards storage. 35 . • Administrative work spaces. • Gun references storage room. 4 Floor space for refrigerators and other lab equipment as required. or biological hood. • Evidence storage.57 m (15 lin ft) bench space per analyst. Individual spot ventilation. fume hood.48 m2 (120 ft2). • Instrumentation room. • • • • 4. 4 Free access space to the rear of each instrument for maintenance and utility access. Sink (may be shared between two analysts). 4 Bench space for each instrument with adjacent layout bench space. Trace Analysis Section • Design as biologically hazardous space with biovestibule. 4 Might be in main laboratory space. 4 Individual analyst laboratory workstation. 4 Supervisor’s office: 11. 4 Analyst’s administrative workstation: 5.95 m2 (64 ft2) per analyst. • Main Trace Analysis Laboratory Space. 4 Follow safety recommendations.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K 4 Sink. 4 Miscellaneous bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures. 4 As required in addition to in-process storage in workstations.
4 Fume hood(s) for vacuum extraction. if required. • Arson investigation room. 4 Bench space and sink(s) as required for layout and examination. 4 Miscellaneous bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures. 4 Space for remotely located chiller. 4 Isolation pad or minimal floor vibration. and sink. 4 1.D E S I G N 4 Instrument maintenance space within the instrument room with fume hood. • Scanning electron microscope room. • Microscopy room. 4 Light level control.524 lin m (5 lin ft) bench space per microscope. 4 Shelving for the storage of references and manuals. 4 Dry fire-suppression system. solvent storage. • Evidence storage room. 36 . 4 Light level control. 4 X-ray Diffraction (XRD). 4 2.438 lin m (8 lin ft) bench space with sink. 4 As required in addition to in-process storage in workstations. 4 Dry fire-suppression system. 4 May be separate room or may be part of the main laboratory space.48 m2 (120 ft2). • Standards storage. 4 Manuals and references shelves. 4 11.
• • • 4. 4 See “General Laboratory Design. Sink (may be shared between two analysts). 4 Floor space for refrigerators and other lab equipment as required. • Evidence examination (scraping or processing) rooms. • Design as biologically hazardous space with biovestibule.95 m2 (64 ft2) per analyst.438 lin m (8 lin ft) bench layout space with sink. 4 2.935 m2 (150 ft2)each room. 37 . 4 Case review: space for small table and chairs where three or four analysts can confer informally. 4 Light level control. • Main Forensic Biology Laboratory Space. 4 Minimum 13. Individual in-process secure evidence storage.” 4 May be within the laboratory section or centrally located outside of the laboratory section. 4 Individual analyst laboratory workstation.48 m2 (120 ft2). Forensic Biology/DNA Section • Provide general requirements for separation of laboratory space in accordance with TWGDAM guidelines.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Evidence drying room(s). • General contamination prevention is critical.57 m (15 lin ft) bench space per analyst. 4 Supervisor’s office: 11. One additional room for every six analysts. 4 Minimum of two rooms to separate victim and suspect evidence. • Administrative work spaces. 4 Miscellaneous bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures. 4 Evidence hanging apparatus above exam table. 4 Mobile exam table with access all around. 4 Analyst’s administrative workstation: 5.
438 lin m (8 lin ft) bench layout space with sink. • Wet blood preparation. 4 Minimum of two rooms to separate victim and suspect evidence. 4 Light level control. 4 Double sink. One additional room for every six analysts. 4 Glasswares washing and storage. 4 See “General Laboratory Design. • Reagent preparation room. 4 Sink(s). 4 Minimum 13. 4 Ultra-low temperature freezer storage. • Evidence drying room(s). • Freezer storage. 4 Minimum 9. 4 May be walk-in freezer. 4 May be walk-in refrigerator. 4 Fume hood(s) with solvent and separate acid/alkali storage base cabinets.D E S I G N • Evidence examination (scraping or processing) rooms. 4 Mobile exam table with access all around. 4 May be refrigerators in main laboratory space or in separate room. • Refrigerated storage.” 4 May be within the laboratory section or centrally located outside of the laboratory section. 38 . 4 Biological hood(s).29 m2 (100 ft2). 4 2. 4 Evidence hanging apparatus above exam table. 4 As required in addition to in-process evidence storage in workstations.935 m2 (150 ft2) each room.
• Electrophoresis. 4 Approximately 18. 4 Refrigerator.) 4 Photographic darkroom design. 4 Light level control. 39 . • PCR amplification/detection room. 4 Minimum 13.935 m2 (150 ft2). 4 May be in separate room or on benches in main laboratory space.48 m2 (120 ft2). • Photo room.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K 4 Autoclave. 4 Minimum 18. • PCR preparation room. • X-ray processing room. 4 Minimum 11. 4 X-ray viewer.581 m2 (200 ft2). 4 Negative pressure ventilation. (Note: needed only if using radioisotopes. 4 Safe lights. Design to prevent crosscontamination of airborne product from PCR room to surrounding spaces. 4 Flammable materials storage refrigerator.581 m2 (200 ft2). 4 1. 4 Negative pressure relative to adjacent spaces. 4 Biological hood(s).83 lin m (6 lin ft) bench space per photo station for equipment and layout. 4 Interlock vestibule entry designed like biovestibule. 4 Layout bench space with sink. 4 Some processing equipment requires supplemental water connections and floor drains. 4 Refrigerator(s).
4 Secure storage areas. i. 4 Miscellaneous bench space for equipment and layout. • Computer lab (CODIS). 4 Minimum 18. 4 Storage space.D E S I G N 4 9. 4 Miscellaneous bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures. 4 Miscellaneous bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures. Design to prevent double cross-contamination.48 m2 (120 ft2).524 lin m (5 lin ft) bench space for each computer workstation. 4 0.. airborne product from mtDNA room to surrounding spaces. 4 One video imager shared between two computer workstations. 4 Minimum 18. 4 Interlock vestibule entry designed similar to biovestibule. 4 Dedicated phone line(s) and additional data ports as required. 40 .581 m2 (200 ft2). • Research and development/methods development. 4 X-ray viewer(s). • Administrative work spaces. and airborne materials from surrounding spaces to mtDNA room. 4 Supervisor’s office: 11. • Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) room. 4 Can be considered nonlaboratory space and located accordingly. 4 Shelving for references and manuals. 4 Space for network servers and/or other computer hardware.e.9144 m (3 lin ft) bench space for each video imager.581 m2 (200 ft2).29 m2 (100 ft2) per analyst. 4 1.
Sink (may be shared between two analysts).F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K 4 Analyst’s administrative workstation: 5. 4 Humidity test chamber. • • • 3.524 lin m (5 lin ft) bench space per dusting station. Latent Prints Section • Design as biologically hazardous space with biovestibule. 4 Multichambered cabinets with individually controlled exhaust. 4 May be part of the main latent prints laboratory space. • Chemical processing. 4 As required in addition to in-process storage in workstations. • Main Latent Prints Laboratory Space. 4 May be part of the main latent prints laboratory space.95 m2 (64 ft2) per analyst. 41 . 4 Miscellaneous bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures. • Cyanoacrylate processing. 4 Floor space for refrigerators and other lab equipment as required. 4 Task lighting. 4 Case review: space for small table and chairs where three or four analysts can confer informally. • Dusting stations. 4 Individual analyst laboratory workstation. 4 Bench space with hood(s) and sink(s) as required for specific equipment and procedures. 4 May be part of the main latent prints laboratory space.048 lin m (10 lin ft) bench space per analyst. Individual in-process secure evidence storage. 4 1. • Evidence storage.
4 Fume hood with large sink for dye processing. 4 1. 4 1. 4 Analyst’s administrative workstation: 9. Questioned Documents Section • Main Questioned Documents Laboratory Space.83 lin m (6 lin ft) bench space per photo station for equipment and layout.29 m2 (100 ft2) per analyst. • Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS) room. 4 Light level control. 4 Case review: space for small table and chairs where three or four analysts can confer informally. • Photo room.935 m2 (150 ft2). 4 Supervisor’s office: 13. 4 Light level control. 4 Hardware and other space requirements vary per vendor. 4 Minimum 13. • Laser room. 4 North exposure with natural light. 4 Light level control.D E S I G N • Alternate light source room(s). 4 Individual in-process secure evidence storage (may be at nonlaboratory workstations). or provide access to darkroom with sink.524 lin m (5 lin ft) per computer workstation.48 m2 (120 ft2). 4 Minimum 11. • Administrative work spaces. 42 . 4 Layout bench.935 m2 (150 ft2) 4 Design as darkroom with sink. 4 Can be considered nonlaboratory space and located accordingly.
• Evidence room. • Evidence storage room. 4 As required in addition to in-process storage at workstations. • Equipment room.29 m2 (100 ft2) per analyst.62 lin m (25 lin ft) bench space per analyst.48 m2 (120 ft2). 4 Bench space for equipment and evidence layout with sink. • Administrative work spaces. 4 Minimum 11. 4 9. 4 Fume hood(s) with solvent and separate acid/alkali storage base cabinets. Computer Evidence Section • May be designed as computer hardware space.935 m2 (150 ft2). 4 Mobile tables for individual case examination. 4 Supervisor’s office: 13. 4 Various types of telephone lines.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K 4 Miscellaneous bench and floor space as required for specific equipment and procedures.29 m2 (100 ft2) per analyst. Chemical and biological hazards will not be present. approximately one table per examiner. • Main computer evidence laboratory space. 4 Analyst’s administrative workstation: 9. 4 Independent data line with two jacks. 43 . • Chemical processing room.29 m2 (100 ft2) per analyst. A sample statement of work (SOW) for a forensic computer examination laboratory is found in Appendix III. 4 Individual analyst laboratory workstation: 7. 4 Case review: space for small table and chairs where three or four analysts can confer informally.62 lin m (25 lin ft) bench space per analyst. 4 Miscellaneous computer evidence bench: 7. 4 9.
technical support. Administrative • Design standards for these spaces should be based on acceptable office space design standards. • Files for active cases. 4 Supervisor’s office: 13. and have been divided into four categories: administrative. there are basic functional components and areas that are universal to most laboratory buildings. • Offices for support personnel. • Private offices. photocopy. building. and case support. evidence analysis. 4 Various types of telephone lines. • Clerical. General technical areas are shared by most laboratory sections within a building. training rooms. 4 Shared offices or open office systems furniture. office space. 4 Independent data line with two jacks. and needs will vary for freestanding laboratories or laboratories occupying only part of a building. and needs will vary depending upon laboratory size and functions. but are not used for. 4 Two National White Collar Crime Center (NWCCC) network connections. 44 . and facsimile. • Mail. if any. 4 May be included as part of the main computer evidence laboratory space. The following set of checklists serve as recommended guidelines and requirements for universal laboratory building components. Administrative areas are nontechnical and primarily consist of office space used for evidence support.D E S I G N • Administrative work spaces. 4 Based on existing space standards.29 m2 (100 ft2) per analyst. For example. 4 Analyst’s administrative workstation: 9. and technical support areas are standard necessities that must be considered for space during the design phase. administrative.935 m2 (150 ft2). Technical support areas are directly related to. • Dry fire-suppression system. Universal Facility Design Components Although no two forensic laboratories are alike. Building areas are not directly related to evidence analysis. and general technical.
• Lobby/reception. 4 Air handling systems. 4 Data line provisions. 4 Periodicals shelves. 4 Fume and biological hood exhaust equipment. 4 Fire extinguishing systems and sprinkler control rooms. 4 Premise wiring rooms and/or closets. 4 Computer rooms and/or closets. 4 Central plant water treatment systems.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Conference room(s). 4 Book stacks. 4 Domestic hot and cold water systems. • Communications. 45 . 4 Telephone equipment rooms and/or closets. • Library. 4 Heating. 4 Laboratory compressed air and vacuum systems. 4 Instrument gas manifold and distribution systems. and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment rooms. • Consultant offices. 4 Study carrel(s) 4 Study table(s) 4 Computer information terminal(s) Building • Mechanical. ventilation.
4 Hazardous waste disposal. 4 General laboratory storage. 4 Lab coat cleaning. Technical Support • Storage. 4 Shipping and receiving. 4 Janitorial closet(s). 4 Compressed gas cylinder storage. • Other. 4 Uninterruptable power supply (UPS) equipment. 4 Emergency generator. 4 Recycling. 4 General supplies storage. 4 Rest rooms. 4 Break room(s). • Staff use. 4 General waste disposal. 4 Locker rooms with showers. 4 Service entrance and main switch gear. 4 Passenger and/or freight elevator(s).D E S I G N • Electrical. 4 Long-term files storage. 4 Electrical service panels. 4 Lunch room. 4 Electrical closets. 46 .
• • • • • • • • • • • General evidence storage shelving. 4 Evidence drying. 4 After-hours secure evidence lockers. Refrigerated and frozen evidence storage: refrigerators and freezers or walk-in units. 4 Evidence custodian workstations: minimum 5. Biohazardous evidence storage. General Technical • Vehicle processing. 4 Evidence case review/triage/conference room(s). ventilated storage room. • At least one bay large enough to accommodate vans and motor homes. 4 One shop sink per bay.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K 4 Chemical storage. or ventilated flammable storage cabinets.95 m2 (64 ft2). Dry fire-suppression system. 4 Evidence disbursal and return counter to and from laboratory sections. Secure narcotics storage. 47 . Secure valuables storage. 4 Securable and air conditioned/heated forensic garage bay(s). sending. Gun storage. 4 Laser or remote fiber light source. 4 Evidence storage. 4 Evidence workroom. and receiving evidence. 4 Workbench space: 3.048 lin m (10 lin ft) per bay. Long-term evidence storage. Flammable evidence storage: fire-rated. Photocopy and facsimile. Layout countertop space with sink.48 m2 (120 ft2). Mail room features for packaging. 4 Evidence supervisor office: minimum 11. 4 Evidence receiving and return counter from and to submitting agencies. • • Evidence.
E S I G N
4 Vehicle lift (fixed or portable). 4 High-intensity lighting. 4 Additional pull-down lighting. 4 Tools storage. 4 Evidence drying room(s). 4 Compressed air. • Forensic photography. 4 Can be utilized for laboratory support only or offer full services, including public relations and graphic arts. 4 Film and print for black and white and color processing. 4 Chemical storage and mixing space. 4 Studio. 4 Finishing. 4 Computer-aided design and drafting (CADD) for graphic arts. 4 Photographic equipment and supplies storage. 4 Refrigerator. • Computer imaging. 4 Video and photographic enhancement. 4 General enhancement of latent prints, footprints, etc. 4 Virtual reality crime scene recording. • Training. 4 Classroom(s). 4 Audio/visual media room. 4 Exhibit storage. 4 Mock crime scene room(s). 4 Training laboratory.
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4 Breath alcohol training. 4 Video conferencing. 4 Computer and television networking. • Quality assurance. 4 Proficiency testing/sample preparation laboratory (might be shared with training laboratory). 4 Conference/office. 4 Record storage and archival facilities. • Crime scene unit. 4 Equipment storage. 4 Staging area.
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The Construction Process
During this phase all the facility planning and design work will be brought to fruition and the forensic laboratory facility will be built. During the construction phase a team of individuals represents the laboratory’s interests, ensuring that all the laboratory concepts are fully implemented. Each member of the team has a defined set of responsibilities. The laboratory will need to rely on the team members’ collective expertise with respect to interpretation of the contract documents, resolution of technical construction issues, and unforeseen construction conditions, such as ground water or bad soil. This team often includes: • The building owner’s project manager or site representative, usually from facilities planning and design, the laboratory planner, and the contracting officer. • Members of the design team, including the architect, and structural, mechanical, and electrical engineers. It is critical that the laboratory director monitor progress during construction and make available to the project team an individual who is knowledgeable about all laboratory design requirements. This person will assist and act as a resource to the project team, answering questions and responding to issues directly affecting the forensic laboratory’s functional design requirements and facilitating the exchange of information between laboratory staff and the construction team when required.
Laboratory Technical Coordinating Officer (LTCO)
The laboratory technical coordinating officer (LTCO) is the individual assigned to represent the laboratory’s interests and to act as a facilitator/coordinator during the construction phase. The LTCO must be: • Knowledgeable about the project requirements. • Readily available and willing to continue to serve through the construction phase. • Familiar with the design requirements and concepts and previously involved in the design process. • Able to clearly communicate and effectively work with all team members to realize complete success. Remember, this is a once in a lifetime responsibility that: • Requires a great deal of time and commitment. • May require the LTCO to give up other responsibilities. • The LTCO is probably not formally trained to do.
These documents must be fully understood. A very complex set of relationships exists between the contractor. These relationships are clearly defined by the contract agreements. (The contractors submitting bids on the project may or may not be prequalified). The LTCO has a role on and is part of a much larger team. Each project is different. must understand their responsibilities and the limits of their authority and rely on the other members of the team for support. A construction contract is then signed. including the work of his subcontractors. 52 . If the LTCO has questions or concerns.C O N S T R U C T I O N All construction team members. The qualified bidder deemed to provide the “best value” to the government is normally awarded the construction contract. Each general contractor and their subcontractors estimate the cost of construction and submit a binding bid to the owner’s representative. The greatest advantage to this method of construction delivery is that there is one point of accountability. The general contractor is the sole point of responsibility to construct the building as defined by these documents. construction managers (CM’s) actually manage the construction of a facility for or with the building owner. It is therefore important that the laboratory director and the LTCO both review and understand the contract agreement and formal lines of communication established for their project. Bids are generally received and opened at a public opening. The LTCO should not be allowed to work directly with the contractor or his subcontractors. including the LTCO. drawings and specifications are advertised for receipt of bids from interested contractors. The LTCO should report and work through the individual responsible for administration of the construction contract on the owner’s behalf. subcontractors suppliers. Construction managers are often integrally involved during the design process. The drawings and specifications are enjoined as part of the contract agreement defining the facility to be constructed for the contracted amount. Defining Responsibility and Authority It is difficult to outline precisely everyone’s role and responsibility during the construction of a facility. The form of contract agreement by which the construction project is being delivered and differences in a building owner’s ability to manage a construction project can vary. the building owner. they should be discussed with the contracting officer and the project manager. and the architect/engineer. Construction Management Contract Under this type of contract. recommending alternative construction materials and methods based on their experience with local construction practices.3 Forms of Construction Contracts Traditional Construction Contract Under a traditional construction contract.
the design/build contractor completes facility plans and specifications and then constructs the facility for a guaranteed maximum price. some Federal organizations work through GSA or the Army Corps of Engineers.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K The CM is responsible for managing construction for the owner. The bidding process (especially for government facilities) awards the contract to the lowest bidder. The two advantages of this form of construction delivery are the input a construction manager can provide during the design process and the ability to guarantee a maximum price for the facility cost early in the design process. This description establishes a contractual scope of work for the design/build team. The construction manager may elect to do some of the construction. It is important for the LTCO to understand who contractually represents the owner through the construction process. additional requirements or changes must be negotiated. or a combination. However. The advantage of this form of contract is speed. Some State or local agencies will contract with a construction management firm under separate contract outside of the construction agreement. it is imperative that the facility description be extremely accurate and complete whether it is a written narrative. there are issues about which the laboratory director should be concerned to ensure the satisfactory completion of the facility. In this form of contract. The construction manager negotiates and oversees the work completed by other subcontractors. some organizations do not have internal groups and must contract with another outside agency. Prequalify Bidders Forensic laboratory facilities are extremely complex and require a contractor with demonstrated experience building this type of project. drawings. guaranteeing that construction will not exceed an agreed-upon maximum price for the facility. lab directors will not be 53 . usually the work of general trades. Some State organizations work through a State facilities management and planning office. Process As the construction process moves through a series of steps. Methods To Administer Construction Contracts The most common way to administer a construction contract is through a facilities management and planning office or contracting agency within the organization. For example. Design/Build Contract Based on a definitive description of the facility in a detailed project program.
Prequalification should be based on the following: • Company experience. including: 4 Direct notification of qualified contractors. include a process to prequalify bidders. Steps include: • Solicitation. • Prebid conference. 4 Advertisement in local newspapers. successfully completed similar types of projects? 4 Have key personnel successfully completed projects of a similar size? 4 Review key personnel references. or issues not clearly addressed in the contract documents. Therefore. Invitations to bid can take many forms.C O N S T R U C T I O N allowed to disqualify unqualified bidders after bids are received and opened. the qualified bidders are invited to prepare bids for the construction of the forensic laboratory. if possible. 4 Advertisement in trade journals. 54 . Keep the following in mind when considering key personnel: 4 Have key personnel. litigation? • Key personnel. or had a history of. such as the project superintendent. Has the company: 4 Successfully constructed similar types of projects? 4 Successfully constructed projects of similar size? 4 Provided adequate bonding capacity? 4 Provided verifiable references? 4 Met previous construction schedules? 4 Demonstrated an acceptable record with respect to cost control and change orders? 4 Been involved with. This serves to notify all contractors interested in preparing bids of any special conditions of which they should be aware. 4 What kind of commitment is the company willing to make with respect to assigning these individuals to the project? Bidding During the bidding process.
it is imperative that all bidders are notified of any revisions in order to make bids comparable. many questions will be received from prospective bidders. These questions are referred to as Requests for Information (RFI’s). Often for critical systems or materials where high expectations of quality exist. An additive alternate is additional work that the building owner may elect to do if the bid cost is within his budget. a sample panel or mockup is constructed to establish a benchmark or standard for the project. • Coordination drawings. This facilitates reaching an understanding by members of the construction team of the procedures that are to be followed during construction. change orders. Often a project includes alternates. • Analysis of bids and alternates. During the bidding process. Often. This is called an addendum. a mockup of an entire laboratory module is constructed and the casework used in the mockup can be reused in the facility. • Award of the construction contract. the construction contract between the owner and contractor can be signed. including all necessary bid forms. Any areas of specific concern also should be discussed. All bids must be evaluated carefully. Alternates are portions of the work that may or may not be executed. • Coordination of work. Construction Hold a preconstruction conference. Once the successful bidder has been identified and the bid certified as bona fide. A deductive alternate is work that may be deleted from the contract if the bid cost of construction is too high. Most RFI’s can be simply answered by the design team. establishing: • Chain of communication. • Construction schedule. Multiple alternates in the bid package can make the evaluation of the bids extremely complex. RFI’s. Bids received are normally opened and recorded at a public bid opening. and payments. • Requests for Information (RFI’s) and addendums. • Procedures for processing shop drawings. • Bid opening.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Issue documents. as the cost savings realized will be less than if the same portion of work were an additive alternate. such as: • Site security. A nominal fee is usually applied to cover the cost of printing and handling. Addendums are issued during the bidding process for this purpose and should be issued no later than 14 days prior to bid opening. Deductive alternates should be avoided as much as possible. • Mockups. All interested contractors are provided with sets of plans and specifications. or an error in the documents. However. if there is incomplete or conflicting information. 55 .
Architect/Engineer (A/E) It should be noted that the Architect/Engineer (A/E) usually has primary (but not sole) responsibility for periodic site inspection. Obtain training for the facilities engineer and custodial staff on new equipment and systems and arrange for service for the equipment and systems. Toward the end of construction. as a facility is constructed. it is much easier to change. For critical systems where high quality is specified and expected. Punch List.C O N S T R U C T I O N Periodic Site Inspections. and Final Inspection Hold periodic site inspections throughout construction. The list should be reviewed by the building owner and the architect. Pitfalls During the construction process. This is a false economy. which should be defined in the contract between the Owner and the Architect/ Engineer. Fully Implementing Building and Systems Concepts Often. These drawings should be carefully reviewed by the design team for their compliance with the plans and specifications and by the LTCO for meeting the intent of the laboratory concepts. who should walk through the structure and add to the list as necessary. Shop drawing. Some owners may seek to economize on professional services by omitting or reducing these services. events can occur that may prevent a facility from achieving the laboratory’s level of expectation. Shop drawings are drawings from materials suppliers or subcontractors that precisely detail the installation and materials they propose to use. If the mockup does not meet specified levels of quality. (Post Construction Award Services). Commissioning/Occupancy Ensure that systems are in place and in working order. A punch list is a list of items compiled by the contractor that are incomplete or need to be fixed. mockups provide a method of examining the systems before the bulk of the materials are either fabricated or installed. punch list and numerous other tasks. These services have usual and customary areas of responsibility/performance. the organization of utility distributed systems is critical for adaptability and 56 . compile a punch list. Following are common pitfalls to anticipate: Quality Standards/Expectations Mockups. In laboratory facilities. design concepts are not fully carried out. Many of the issues will be beyond the laboratory’s authority to control and the lab will have to rely on the expertise of others to control. and that laboratory staff and facilities engineers understand how the building systems work. A/E services in this area are delivered as a part of his “PCAS” Services.
pit-mounted washers or autoclaves with similar capacity have different requirements for utility connections and require a different pit dimension. Often.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K ease of maintenance. Laboratory Layout Revisions During the construction process. often during construction. first served. These variations must be carefully reviewed early on to avoid problems later in the construction process when equipment is installed. it is not unusual for a large percentage of the laboratory users to change. A significant amount of time may be required of the LTCO to coordinate these revisions during constructions. The coordination of drawings of building systems is an issue that should be carefully reviewed at the preconstruction conference and enforced in the contract general conditions. “or equal” equipment that is bid does not have the same utility requirements or is a different dimension than that used as the basis of design. The LTCO must be aware of any changes in equipment that may affect the building or utility requirements. 57 . utilities are routed first come. Existing equipment to be relocated presents a different set of issues. This may lead to revisions in the laboratory fit-up. Equipment Installation and Coordination The purchase and installation of fixed or major movable equipment is complicated and can result in coordination problems. and form a tangled web incapable of serving or fulfilling future project needs. For example. connecting the equipment. This includes moving the equipment. Yet. and the potential that some equipment may be replaced during the construction period.
The laboratory and its operations don’t stop because the laboratory moves. Phase and schedule move activities so that routine daily events occur as smoothly and efficiently as possible. Without such a plan. This requires logistics and planning. When considering or planning a move. the move may not be done properly and the consequences can be formidable (see figure 1). who has approval or sign-off authority? 59 . Work must continue even as the shift is made from the old facility to the new. address the following questions: • What are the tasks or activities? • In what order are they performed? • Who is going to do them? And.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Moving Executing the move of a forensic laboratory requires a strategic plan.
Specific questions as to labeling. Then decide how far prior to this date move activities need to start in order to complete the move successfully. Will large pieces of equipment (for example. the plan is fluid. Ensure that repairs are complete before staff move in. The plan should be chronological—a three-phase framework that includes premove. application or intent should be addressed to Robert A. Jarzen of the Sacramento County Laboratory of Forensic Services. “P” for postmove. Prioritize tasks. Write down all the tasks that are part of a strategic move plan. who is generally too busy— should be assigned to attend to these and the many other details pertinent to the total move process. Consider an interim step that protects the validity of reagents and materials during the move and keeps the lab operating. and postmove activities. Sequencing consists of listing every activity necessary for the move. Moving Activities • Brainstorm and Sequence Activities. “S” for short-term. Plan for security needs. someone in the laboratory—not the laboratory director. Define the end first. and especially plan to protect the safety of people. codes. review. Always keep in mind the date the move needs to be completed. putting the activities into a bounded timeframe. and modify the plan as needed while making it easily accessible to other interested parties (the State’s attorney or agency chief executive). A move plan should consolidate premove. move. Get organized. What if the lab needs to rent equipment because some of it was dropped from the back of the truck? What will the lab do if the electrical system does not work properly? 60 . Transition plan. When renovating a facility. Establish a specific plan and articulate it early and often. A contingency plan is essential. Charting the move allows the chief planner to view. and assigning the tasks. identify hazardous conditions. It will grow and evolve constantly. should these be moved before the window frames are installed? Are State/county lines being crossed? If so. electron microscopes) fit through the door? If not. An example of a detailed move plan demonstrating many of the concepts discussed in this section is found in Appendix IV. “I” for intermediate. It might be helpful to chart the tasks using available project planning software.M O V I N G A move plan should be based on the projected move-in date and time required to accomplish tasks. move. such as the presence of asbestos. or any combination of these terms. Contingency plan. Tasks can be assigned “L” for long-range. heating and cooling systems. The key to the process is the sequencing of events. and postmove activities into individual paths. Plan for late deliveries. Include a transition plan for satisfying the lab’s clients. has the lab complied with the regulations for each region? Just as with the LTCO. There’s a tremendous amount of detail—everything from whether the lab’s loading platforms fit the movers’ trucks to refrigeration concerns when transporting evidence. Initially.
Allocate resources. Notify them of changes in the plan as well. an RFP is required and bids evaluated. • Designate Team/Sector Captains. staff. The manual may include the following information: How to select a mover. Add any new policies and restate those policies from the old facility that will be continued. Before completely halting the old lab’s operations. green for firearms). Often. validate the systems in the new facility to ensure it is ready to immediately support lab functions. The last items packed are those used every day. Assign one staff person the responsibility for the move and prioritize specific tasks. Selecting a mover varies with individual circumstance. other departments involved. Plan for new purchases. Staff time may be needed to ensure that computer ports are functional. such as those used only monthly. Under the team captain. Don’t wait until 6 months before the move to begin to consider purchasing new equipment. the State’s attorney’s office). Progress eventually to the equipment which. Decide the elements of the complete. The pack-up.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Assign Human and Dollar Resources. Articulate a plan and notify other individuals (clients. well-integrated move plan and develop a move manual. The new facilities manual will serve as a guidebook of signposts and activities in the new building. including the time it will take to accomplish them. once it is removed. assign sector captains in charge of specific areas such as DNA. packing begins. Articulate the needs and services required. whether boxed materials should have a room number or a color that designates the department (red for serology. Is one mover needed. This decision must be made early. • Develop a Move Manual. As the move draws near. work stops. or 14? Security may be needed. Articulation of the plan. The sector captains work with the team captain and the movers to decide how to communicate moving instructions. 61 . Packing can be done in stages to minimize disruption. or documents. • Devise a New Facilities Manual. Anchor responsibility for the move. For example. firearms. Some materials can be packed early. Assign a team captain. There also may be minority vendor set-aside requirements. both human and financial.
• Personnel Coordination. Hold meetings with staff to discuss how the move should occur and once the course of action is decided. determine the size of the job. • Chemical and Biological Hazards. State. know how the lab’s equipment is currently positioned and future needs. Specifications include an inventory of the items to be moved. and functioning equipment. Plan to have a special custodial staff ready as the move occurs in case of spills or breakage. Rented trailers or a warehouse can be used for interim storage. Before issuing a request for proposals (RFP). trained custodial staff. For RFP submission. Have this individual monitor the whole process and report regularly to the lab director. Chemical and biological hazards play a large role in determining the type of facility to be built. Within the laboratory. 62 . The old one needs to be left clean. Inventory is crucial because there are different kinds of movers for different kinds of equipment. • Custodial Requirements. During the move. and local regulations may apply. so that inventory can be stored if it needs to be moved before the facility is ready. Interim storage. the placement of equipment. • Security Assurance and Training. Staff in each section of the lab should work with the move captain to plan how their section will move and to where.M O V I N G Continuous Activity Several activities are continuous from the time the decision is made to either refurbish an existing facility or build a new one until after the move is completed. Speciality movers may be needed. one person (the move captain) needs to know what is happening at all times. To enable this planning. They also affect liability and indemnification. issue memos so there is no misunderstanding. everyone should know the plan or their section of it. It may be possible to draw from the professional movers or laboratory staff. especially if the lab is moving from one building to another or being renovated in stages. Arrange for interim secure storage. Maintaining security assurance in the old laboratory while moving and training on the security systems in the new building is essential throughout the process. • Inventory. be sure that staff are familiar with the new facility. Plan for custodial requirements in the old and new facilities. Personnel coordination is imperative and good communication essential. Inventory each section. The new facility requires appropriate maintenance. Federal. and how items will be moved.
and instrument handling associated with the move. If specialty movers are needed to handle equipment. Know the financing rules. Keep in mind that there are different kinds of movers for different sorts of materials.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K Long-Range Activities • Request for Proposals. Determine the extent of the laboratory’s responsibility if the move is executed in a certain way. Allocate funds and set up schedules. Meet with the comptroller or agency that oversees expenditures in the lab’s municipality or State. insurance. Temporary storage needs must be part of long-range planning. • Specialty Movers. Develop a list of equipment that would require the manufacturers’ participation in the move and post-move setup. • Furniture/Equipment/Computers. Waiting until too close to the date of the move may mean that temporary facilities are unavailable. • Temporary Storage Needs. decide early in the process: 4 What will be kept? 4 What will be refurbished? 63 . • Warranty Issues. Check with the manufacturer(s) before moving equipment to ensure that warranties are not invalidated by a move. Long-range activities include developing the RFP for movers and considering any specialty aspects such as evaluation of bids. For furniture. equipment. build enough time into the plan to accomplish it on schedule. Ensure that appropriate bonding is in force for all contractors. Address warranty issues for both the professional movers and laboratory staff. • Rules of the Game. • Liability Issues. Consider all tasks that need to be performed and when the move must be completed. and computer systems. A sample Statement of Work (SOW) is provided for your information in Appendix V. Meet with the appropriate individual who oversees the RFP process before developing an RFP document. Coordinate liability issues.
Prior to the transfer. police agencies) well ahead of the actual move. Consider the weight of boxes when packing library contents. • Notification of Clients/Users. Notify lab clients (State’s attorney’s offices. license. do the books need fumigation. Build in refrigeration and other ways of preserving fragile or friable evidence during the move. just before the move. • Refrigeration Concerns. build in validation time and money. or do the shelves require earthquake protection? Build in those kinds of considerations with respect to the library and other items that will be moved from one building to another. such as cranes and forklifts. Also consider issues pertinent to the lab’s geographic area and climate. business cards. and other permits before the move. Intermediate activities include evaluating bids received in response to the RFP and selecting movers and other contractors. ensure there is power and that systems are operating in the new facility. Another intermediate to short-range activity that requires lead time is refrigeration. Intermediate to Short-Range Activities • Specialty Equipment Coordination. and immediately following the move. stationery. Transfer refrigerated items to the new facility quickly. courts. • Update Lab Information.M O V I N G 4 What will be disposed of? 4 What will be acquired? (If new supplies will be bought. Build in time to update the laboratory’s phone numbers. • Library Considerations. Intermediate to short-range activity considerations include any specialty equipment needed to move items from the old building to the new.) Intermediate Activities • Evaluate Bids and Select Mover(s)/Contractor(s). correspondence. Boxes that are too heavy may be too difficult to lift. 64 . For example.
Plan so that people will understand how the system is going to work and build in a method that will make it work correctly. Couriers. and other delivery services of the move.S.S. Short-range planning includes determining key and card access assignments. Postal Service. as well as the utility companies. Planning is needed for systems of filing. • Parking Concerns. 65 . the inventory of materials. Supplies/Restock. • Assign Work Areas/Office Space. At first think of work areas generally as the space where forensic examiners will be assigned. Decide toward the end of the move planning process exactly who is going to sit where. Postal Service. couriers. and supplies and restocking procedures in the new building. Notify the U.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Systems for Filing of Records. • Electronic/Computer Setups. Cover all billing issues (contractor’s liability versus the laboratory’s responsibility) well in advance of the move. • Notification of U. Talk to them about timing of services such as shutting off power in the old building on time and turning on power in the new building on time. Ensure that network nodes are working before the move. Utilities. Decide who is going to have access to the building and to which doors. Ensure that all the necessary packing and moving materials are on hand if the lab is going to do some of its own packing and moving. Short-Range Activities • Key/Card Assignments. Where is everybody going to park? Will there be a class system or a free-for-all? Will parking assignments be based on shift work? Build parking concerns into the move process. More short-range planning is needed for electronic and computer setups. Inventory of Materials. This can be done with more lead time. but choosing to give short-term notification to staff can reduce grievances about personal seating arrangements. Then transfer the electronic/computer equipment and set up the network. • Packing/Moving Materials.
ensure that building functions such as elevators. Determine when the facility will be open. and on how to properly lift items. • Test New Facility Systems: Elevator. Train staff how to operate these systems. Walk through the move process with staff and the movers together. card readers. Notify the lab’s normal vendors (for example. there may have been three shifts in the old facility to make adequate use of a small space. Proper Lifting. • Training Related to the Move: Safety. Hold a verbal rehearsal of the move. Talk through the process with everyone involved to familiarize staff with the procedure planned for moving day. • Walk Through With Staff and Mover. water systems. compressed gases. If the new facility is a stand-alone building. Security. 66 . Items may not be placed exactly as originally directed. Provide vendors proper access to the property and directions on where they should deliver goods. Have extension cords on hand on moving day. Decide the facility’s hours of operation. If the facility is within a shared building.M O V I N G • Extension Cords. and the new larger facility may allow for either two shifts or one. Power. food). Train staff prior to the move on the facility’s new systems. and electrical power work. • Determine Facility Hours. find out about normal operating hours and after-hours access. on safety and security issues. For example. Before occupying the new facility. • Verbal Rehearsal. Water. determine building hours and access. • Access to Property. UPS. Know the vendors’ delivery schedules and have receiving people on hand. • Notification of Normal Vendors and Delivery Schedules. Shut the power off and ensure the emergency lights come on and backup systems are operating.
ensure that it won’t set off the building alarm. Laboratory staff and movers need to know where equipment and materials are going to go. It is imperative that the alarm/security system is in place and operational at the time evidence is moved into the new facility. • Alarms. • Equipment/Evidence Audits. and send a person along with the truck. • Temporary Signs. Try to log some evidence into the new computer system. put it on the truck. Tours. An armed guard or police escort may be necessary (for example. and the general public. Just before the move. Ensure that all the nodes work for report generation and tracking evidence. Station staff members at the old site to ensure that the movers pick up only items that are to be moved. It is probably best to get approval in 67 . If it is necessary to have people lock up at night. Have a good computer shake-out. Seal the evidence in a box. city. Decide how access will be restricted to lab staff. Have a clear audit of movement of the lab’s equipment and evidence from the old building to the new one. The ability to prove integrity of evidence transfer is important. Does the alarm merely sound. Document it. • Security Compliance: Restrictions. Consider security compliance concerns. Temporary signs can help answer questions before they are asked. label it. with drug evidence). or do people respond? Another issue of alarm/security is the monitoring by cameras. This is helpful both for the lab director and to ensure that the contractors do their jobs. tour groups. Will it be done from the first day? Make sure. Station staff members at the new site to direct movers on where to bring and place items. Check these again after the move. Prepare temporary signs to direct the movement of materials into the new facility.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K During the Move Activities • Monitoring the Movers. Know what constitutes an intrusion and what the reaction is to it. Coordinate this with the county. • Evidence Transfer Integrity. Document damage/breakage or injury to personnel. check the operation and responsiveness of alarm systems for security and for items such as hood monitors and temperature control. or State’s attorney. • Computer Shake-Out. Check that the alarm works.
If they do not. 68 . Test new computer and evidence tracking systems. • Discard Used Moving Materials. After the move. seal it. if the temperature is too hot or too cold staff need to know what to do. • Conduct Fire Drill/Safety Inspection. • Train Staff on New Systems. ensure that the methods are verified and are operating appropriately. biological evidence). Staff will feel included and the director will receive a better response if it is a routine and regular practice. Set up and verify the operation of any new equipment. Compile a list of problems so the problems can be corrected. Obtaining feedback from staff should be an ongoing process. • Set Up and Verify Operation of Equipment. • Damage and Breakage. Discard used moving materials quickly. and which monitor to change to correct the situation. request feedback from staff. For refrigerated evidence (rape kits.M O V I N G writing of the lab’s moving plan. or broken during the move and determine responsibility for repair or replacement. and move it to the new facility. leave it in the refrigerator. the button to push. When it arrives. If the gas chromatograph has been moved. Many movers will take back boxes and other items. They need to know the person to call. For example. Identify and list items lost. If work methods have been changed because of the geometry of a room or the availability of new venting. put it on the truck. Test gases and water to ensure they meet specifications. Method Changes. Training staff on the new building systems is useful. Tracking Systems. Conduct a fire drill and a safety inspection. verify that the seals and the evidence are intact. Postmove Activities • Gather Feedback. Ensure everyone knows the location of eyewash stations and first aid kits. revalidate it. damaged. the lab is responsible.
4 HVAC controls. The manual can address policies such as: 4 Security issues.and/or safety-related issues.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K • Introductions/Tours for Media Representatives/Dignitaries and the Staff Party. This will establish a system that will allow staff to best use the laboratory and enable a lab director to change policies carried over from the old facility. 4 Placement of personal art. 4 Smoking. photos. 4 Fire. • New Facilities Manual. Postmove activities may include tours for the media and dignitaries and a staff party. 4 Building evacuation. 4 Food and drinks. Create a new facilities manual. 69 . and belongings.
A323. Groden. Gatwood. The AIA published 3 or 4 “Handbooks of Professional Practice. S. these could prove helpful as a reference. “Documents. DC..” (Includes sample documents for many of the forms of agreement and other documents used during the construction phase.. consultant contract forms and even helpful advice on how to select an architect. 1994..” which are available through the national headquarters in Washington. A. L. Bldg. Baum. 225..T..J.. First.)  The Architects Handbook of Professional Practice.) . forms. E. G. J. New York. Rm. 735. Stark. Manual 4. Gaithersburg. American Institute of Architects. John Wiley & Sons. 2nd ed.W. the American Institute of Architects (AIA) publishes a number of useful brochures.. Maryland 20899. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. and/or through contact with State AIA Chapters. Office of Law Enforcement Standards.) (Note: Additionally.F O R E N S I C L A B O R A T O R Y F A C I L I T Y H A N D B O O K REFERENCES  Diberardinis.. Ed. M.S. While not applicable in all cases. (Note: Copies of this journal are available from: National Institute of Standards and Technology. Seth. Guidelines for Laboratory Design: Health and Safety Considerations. New York.  Research Facilities of the Future.K. Vol. The New York Academy of Sciences. 1993.
go to http://www. MD 20849–6000 800–851–3420 e-mail: askncjrs@ncjrs. please contact: National Criminal Justice Reference Service Box 6000 Rockville. call or e-mail NCJRS.org You can view or obtain an electronic version of this document from the NCJRS Justice Information Center World Wide Web site.org Other Department of Justice publications noted in this report can be ordered from NCJRS. . To access the World Wide Web site.For more information on the National Institute of Justice. Most are available free of charge and most can be downloaded from the Justice Information Center Web site. If you have any questions.ncjrs.
The Law Enforcement and Corrections Standards and Testing Program is an applied research effort that determines the technological needs of justice system agencies. and testing capabilities of the independent laboratories are evaluated by OLES prior to testing each item of equipment. which develops voluntary national performance standards for compliance testing to ensure that individual items of equipment are suitable for use by criminal justice agencies. personnel. In addition to the highly technical standards. The standards developed by OLES serve as performance benchmarks against which commercial equipment is measured. including those of the Law Enforcement and Corrections Standards and Testing Program. The facilities. and disseminates the standards and the test results to criminal justice agencies nationwide and internationally.ncjrs. tests commercially available equipment against those standards.S. supervises a national compliance testing program conducted by independent agencies. and OLES helps the technology center staff review and analyze data. State. which serves as a central information and reference source for the Nation’s criminal justice community. State. which created NIJ and directed it to encourage research and development to improve the criminal justice system and to disseminate the results to Federal. The program responds to mandates of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act. write to the National Institute of Justice. . The program operates through: The Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Advisory Council (LECTAC). Washington. sets minimum performance standards for specific devices. The National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLECTC). U. are available from the National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS). The Office of Law Enforcement Standards (OLES) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology.About the Law Enforcement and Corrections Standards and Testing Program The Law Enforcement and Corrections Standards and Testing Program is sponsored by the Office of Science and Technology of the National Institute of Justice (NIJ). For further information. OLES also produces technical reports and user guidelines that explain in nontechnical terms the capabilities of available equipment. The standards are based upon laboratory testing and evaluation of representative samples of each item of equipment to determine the key attributes. or to register with NCJRS. and establish minimum performance requirements for each essential attribute. Publications issued by the National Institute of Justice. Electronic copies can be downloaded from the Justice Information Center World Wide Web site: http://www. DC 20531. consisting of nationally recognized criminal justice practitioners from Federal. develop test methods. operated by a grantee. as amended. Test results are published in Consumer Product Reports designed to help justice system procurement officials make informed purchasing decisions. National Criminal Justice Reference Service. which assesses technological needs and sets priorities for research programs and items to be evaluated and tested. and local agencies. and local agencies. Department of Justice.org.
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