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7 Practical Reasons to Hire Electrical Forensic Inspectors

أبريل 2, 2024

Around 33,470 commercial electrical fires occur in the United States every year. These fires lead to significant financial losses and even 45 deaths, costing around $1.36 billion in direct property damage. If you look at the residential electrical fires, that number gets much larger, much faster.

While there is no way to 100% protect your system from an unwanted disaster, having an electrical failure analysis conducted at your facility is a crucial step to proactively preventing electrical fires. Not only do you avoid costly insurance and litigation issues, but you get to improve the overall functionality and efficiency of your operations.

These challenges are why you need to hire professional forensic electrical engineers. They should be licensed and experienced in insurance, subrogation, and litigation matters, and they should be able to report on the potential or resulting sources of any concern.

If you are unfamiliar with what forensic electrical engineers do or how they help. We at Dreiym Engineering have put together a quick list of the most common areas our decades of experience are utilized within the industry.

What are Electrical Forensic Inspections?

The goal of electrical failure analysis by licensed and experienced forensic electrical engineers is to combine the analytical reasoning of an issue with the investigative strategies designed to diagnose, analyze, and solve any electrical system failures.

The only people who should be conducting such investigations are those engineering firms with direct experience in the field. That is how you know they have the technology, skill, and reporting capabilities for:

  • Uncovering the root cause of a failure (faulty wiring, overloaded circuit, arc issues, etc.)
  • Meeting compliance needs with national and international safety regulations.
  • Providing evidence in a legal or insurance related electrical issue.
  • Discovering potential hazards or weaknesses that need immediate attention.
  • Assessing the extent of damage and the factors leading to such damage.
  • Communicating opportunities for improving the system – especially with disaster-related concerns.

The goal of our experts is to rectify any immediate problem by engineering new strategies that prevent future issues – all while meeting local, state, national, and international regulations, as well as standards.

Top Reasons to Hire Electrical Forensic Inspectors

1 – Investigating Electrical Fires

Electrical fires are crucial aspects of any electrical failure analysis. The potential damage, harm, and failure these issues can cause grows exponentially the longer they are left unattended or checked.

A quality investigation should cover any potential problems, but also look at what caused the fire in the first place. For example, was there a power surge that ended in overheating equipment that sparked a fire? Or did the insulation degrade and expose old or insufficient wiring, leading to a fire?

The better you understand the root cause of the fire, the more equipped you are to prevent it in the future.

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2 – Understanding Equipment Failures

Equipment failures are more common than anyone would like to admit. When you work with forensic electrical engineers, you want them to have expert knowledge of the type of equipment you are working with.

In some cases, a manufacturing recall or an initial design flaw can be the cause of the failure. Forensic engineers can then help you seek compensation from the appropriate entity. However, they should also be able to point out when the failure happened because of user error, poor maintenance, or other electrical issues.

3 – Ensuring Compliance Verification

Almost every industry, especially in the industrial sector, has some form of oversight committee or regulatory board. OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) immediately comes to mind, but there are plenty more based on the firm, enterprise, or system you are operating.

To meet the basic standards of these regulatory bodies, you want experts knowledgeable on the factors granting compliance. Forensic specialists should be able to assess your location, offer insights into what is good, fair, and needs improvement so you have a clear pathway to proper compliance.

4 – Gaining Litigation Support

While no one wants to go through the lengthy and often expensive process of a lawsuit or dealing with compensation issues, having a forensic electrical engineering team get into the nitty gritty details makes the entire situation easier to manage. You get authoritative analysis and testimony grounded in technical and scientific reasoning, aiding in the resolution of any disputes.

As we are an independent, third-party engineering firm specializing in electrical failure analysis, we are often called upon to give expert testimony for both private entities and publicly owned operations.

5 – Conducting Safety Audits

Safety is paramount whether you’re running an oil field or a fleet distribution center for local school buses. Forensic inspectors help ensure that you are addressing current safety standards that protect the equipment, meet compliance requirements, and keep workers and guests safe while conducting their business.

Findings during an electrical failure analysis help to rectify any immediate details, but also prevent future incidents. This is essential to ensuring a safe working environment for employees, the public, and environmental concerns. Here, you want a team with extreme attention to detail so the ensuing report you receive is comprehensive and actionable.

6 – Handling Insurance Claims

Insurance claims are a critical area where collaborating with forensic electrical engineers adds significant value to your company. Not only does this help with assessing the value of any compensation should an electrical fire or disaster occur, but the insights you gain can lower your monthly or annual premiums.

Forensic inspectors offer solid evidence that facilitates a much more transparent insurance claims process. You’ll be able to recover from losses more effectively while the claim is validated, so the insurer has all the information necessary for moving forward. Again, this is an area where experience makes a big difference. Always work with an engineering firm that understands the unique complexities of the insurance world.

7 – Reviewing Post-Disaster Analysis

Texas, where our team at Dreiym Engineering is based, ranks third in the nation for natural disasters costing at least $1 billion in damages. Everything from flooding to sudden ice/freezing ends up taking a massive toll on industrial, commercial, and residential properties.

Whenever a building or structure experiences a failure due to a natural disaster, you need a team experienced in electrical failure analysis to uncover what happened, the cause of the incident, what insurance will expect to see, and how to move forward so it doesn’t happen again.

As our team works on everything from utility surge damage to arc flash injuries, we have the experience to assess such post-disaster situations with the detail you need.

Why Choose Dreiym Engineering

The first place to look whenever a failure or electrical fire occurs is at the total electrical system. Having this completed in-house can be an issue because personal association may disrupt the bias of the property analysis or report.

Instead, you want an experienced and licensed professional electrical engineering team that is unbiased. This way, the forensic consultant can get down to the root cause of the system failure and provide the pre-existing conditions that led to the issue at hand.

Our team at Dreiym Engineering can offer definitive explanations as to the how, why, and what you need to know about any electrical fire or failure. We offer precision electrical forensic engineering in Austin, Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, and the surrounding areas and states with impartial results you can rely upon.

With over 30 years of industry service, we are a licensed, experienced, and detail-oriented team here to help. Call us today to schedule a consultation so we can begin our investigation.

Conclusion

Electrical forensic inspections are crucial for any modern business. They are necessary to understand the root issue causing electrical fires and systematic failures. With this knowledge, you can seek compensation, plan for the future, and proactively prevent future instances from reoccurring.

As you contact different electrical experts to determine what happened at your facility, always choose fully licensed electrical experts with direct experience in insurance matters, litigation, and generating the unbiased insights that are crucial to fortifying and protecting the future of your operations. 

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