Lawyers in Armstrong Teasdale’s Fire and Electrical Liability practice have extensive experience in all aspects of explosion, fire and electrocution litigation, from managing fire scene investigations to litigation, trial and appeal. Our lawyers have tried numerous cases in the energy sector over the past 30 years and have handled countless more that were resolved successfully prior to trial.
Because of our breadth of experience, we can effectively and efficiently resolve the most complex explosion, fire and electrocution cases arising out of the gas, petroleum, chemical and electrical power industries, associated service providers, and appliance manufacturers. Knowing the issues, knowing what circumstances caused them and knowing what to do about them require experience. That experience must be extensive and must be coupled with imagination. It must evolve, incorporating advances in law and science that enhance the value of that experience.
Our fire and electrical liability lawyers are committed to the continued advancement of the practice, and all are active members of the legal and professional organizations that influence these areas of science and law. Our lawyers include Certified Fire and Explosion Investigators as certified by The National Association of Fire Investigators (NAFI). NAFI’s Certified Fire and Explosion Investigator (CFEI) Program is an international registry that recognizes qualified fire and explosion investigators and provides the dual benefit of establishing a standard for evaluating the qualifications and creating a benchmark for fire and explosion investigators. The CFEI certification is one of the only fire investigator certifications based solely on the scientific principles of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 921 Guide for Fire and Explosion Investigations. NFPA 921 is recognized by courts across the country and sets the bar for scientific-based investigation and analysis of fire and explosion incidents. One of our lawyers is a member of the NFPA 921 Fire and Explosion Investigations Technical Committee and member of the NFPA 1033 Qualifications for Fire Investigators Technical Committee. One of our lawyers is also certified instructors and graduates of the Department of Homeland Security’s National Fire Academy.
Because of their significant experience, our lawyers are often called on to share their knowledge as instructors, authors and advisers at international, national and local industry conferences. They have presented papers at every meeting of the biennial International Symposium on Fire Investigation Science and Technology for more than a decade and have been instructors at the NAFI National Seminar on Fire Analysis Litigation; the International Association of Arson Investigators (IAAI) Annual Training Conference; and IAAI Local In-Service Training Programs in Arizona, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Texas and Wyoming.
We are experienced trial lawyers. Nothing substitutes for trying an explosion, fire or electrocution case before a jury. Having done so multiple times and in a variety of jurisdictions and factual circumstances, we have acquired the experience to manage and resolve catastrophic occurrences. Even in the current era of mediation, arbitration and other forms of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), trial experience and trial ability are paramount. Trial is still the “alternative” that makes ADR work. Our lawyers have tried more than 100 jury cases to verdict in a variety of jurisdictions. In 2014, for example, we secured the largest defense verdict in the state of Missouri when we represented a major gas company in a $30 million case brought by a repairman who was seriously injured in a furnace explosion. We believe that clients are best served by preparing every case as if it is going to trial, and our willingness to litigate positions us well for alternative forms of dispute resolution and settlement prior to trial.