Expert Witness Electrical Forensics
Electrical forensics is a branch of forensic engineering that deals with the investigation of accidents and failures of electrical systems within a legal context, and many of them are related to fires that might be caused by an electrical failure. People who work in this field are often used by insurance companies or attorneys that represent them, but they can be used by manufacturers or contractors that are trying to defend themselves in any kind of legal case for which they might be held liable. They can also be used to investigate any cases that involve electrocution, as well as in intellectual property and patent disputes.
The Goal of an Electrical Forensics Investigation
The primary goal of an electrical forensics investigation is to determine the legal liability of a fire or any other accident for the purpose of an insurance subrogation or personal injury lawsuit. Some examples of these types of cases can include, but may not be limited to:
- Faulty Appliances — If a fire was caused by an appliance that had a manufacturing or design flaw (which can make it more hazardous than what’s considered reasonable), an insurance company may try to collect money for the cost of the damage (called a “subrogation”) from the manufacturer. If an injury was involved, the victim may file a lawsuit against them as well.
- Poor Workmanship — If an electrician performed a bad installation (which can lead to an electrical fire), this person may be faced with a personal injury or subrogation lawsuit.
- Electrical Injury — If an electrical failure or an electrical system that’s unreasonably hazardous causes an injury (or an “electrocution” if it’s fatal), the responsible party may be faced with a subrogation or injury lawsuit.
- Equipment Failure — If any type of electrical equipment stops working and causes a company to lose money or results in further damage, the manufacturer could be faced with a subrogation or liability lawsuit. This can include the cost to repair or replace the equipment, which can be extensive.
Electrical forensics engineers can get involved in certain cases that involve arson and other set-fire investigations. While it’s not very common for arsonists to cause electrical failures for starting a fire, the presence of electrical appliances and electrical systems in many of these cases requires them to consider it as a possible cause.
Some types of electrical ignition are obvious to an investigator, which would most likely not require the expertise of an electrical forensics engineer. But not all “set-fire” situations are seen as arson, which is viewed as a criminal act. A homeowner that attempts to defraud an insurance company by starting a fire could face prosecution by a governing body, but the insurance company may deny the claim and could possibly file a civil lawsuit.
Qualified Electrical Contractors in the Coastal Bend!
If you’re looking for one of the most qualified electrical contractors in the Coastal Bend, 1st Choice Electric has a team of licensed technicians that can help you with any electrical project. We’re also one of the top choices for performing an electrical forensics investigation. Not only can we look at the problem within the case’s context, but we can also offer expert testimony in a Court of Law. We even have a bucket truck that allows us to look in more elevated areas.
If you want to find out more about how we can help you, be sure to get in touch with us. We would be happy to answer any questions you may have!