How is FSI's Evidence Storage Preservation System (EPS) different than the typical refrigerator or walk-in cooler now used by many police departments and crime labs for biological evidence storage?
The FSI EPS system is different in many ways from conventional refrigeration units:
The EPS uses extremely efficient HEPA filters on all air entering the storage units and all air leaving the storage units. These filters eliminate any contamination from air born particulates between compartments or from the HVAC system.
The EPS also controls and maintains the temperature and humidity at a low level. This cool and dry environment prevents bacterial degradation of DNA evidence. Bacterial degradation requires heat and moisture. Traditional refrigeration units only control the temperature and the cool and wet conditions will allow the bacterial decomposition of DNA evidence.
The Stationary and Mobile Evidence Preservation Systems (SEPS and MEPS) are very comprised of extremely safe and sturdy stainless steel panel construction. The EPS units can be secured outside and withstand any adverse weather. Outside has been preferred to eliminate any type of odors from decomposed human remains from entering a building.
How much blood or other biological materials are needed for a DNA analysis?
DNA can be developed from as little as 50 human cells. These small amounts are equal to or below microscopic level and cannot be seen by the naked eye. These small amounts of material are even more susceptible to degradation and may be lost if not properly stored.
Does EPS provide long-term protection for biological evidence that may be needed during the appeals process?
Yes, EPS can store biological evidence for as long as needed. The EPS evidence package is also needed to establish permanent seals and marking on all evidence.
Some cases require a lengthy evidence collection process, and evidence degradation can occur quickly. How can EPS help?
The Mobile Evidence Preservation system allows immediate drying and cooling of evidence at the crime scene. Very often, if may be weeks before evidence is delivered to a crime laboratory for analyses. The laboratory may also not analyze the evidence for several months. Key evidence could degrade during the staging process resulting in no DNA profiles.
Do the Stationary Evidence Preservation System (SEPS) and the Mobile Evidence Preservation System (MEPS) allow my department to comply with the OSHA Blood Borne Pathogens Standard 1910.1030?
The EPS provides immediate compliance to the OSHA standards. Crime scene and laboratory personnel are not exposed to dangerous pathogens and noxious odors. Unknown weapons of mass destruction such as suspected anthrax powders are also kept out of a laboratory facility or administrative areas. Even suspected powders or liquids that prove negative initiate a great deal of anxiety when submitted to a laboratory or police facility. Storage in outside EPS eliminates possible exposures and staff concerns.
Does FSI offer any customer support for the initial set-up of the EPS system?
24 / 7.
My department is interested in the stationary system, but the standard 8' X 20' unit is too large or isn't large enough. How can FSI accommodate my needs?
An SEPS can be custom designed to fit any space to fit your needs. Interior spaces can be renovated to accommodate any size SEPS.
How can the purchase of an EPS be financed?
An EPS can be directly purchased, financed or leased depending on the needs of the customer.
Are there customers that have purchased EPS that can be contacted as references?
Yes, there are many customers that have expressed a willingness to talk with future customers of EPS products.
Does EPS provide compliance with all evidence and security criteria for laboratory accreditation through the American Society of Laboratory Directors / Laboratory Accreditation Board (ASCLD/LAB) International ISO 17025 accreditation program?
EPS provides full compliance for the storage and safety of biological evidence as per the ASCLD/LAB International ISO 17025 laboratory accreditation program.