Richmond Explosion, Fire, and E-Cigarette Attorneys
We handle complex explosion and fire injury cases
Explosions and fires don’t just cause property destruction. They can damage every part of the body, causing life-threatening injuries, serious disabilities, or even death.
After a catastrophic fire or explosion, victims frequently struggle with complex insurance claims, overwhelming medical bills, and financial uncertainty. At Phelan Petty, we’re here to help when the aftermath of an injury seems like too much to handle.
Catastrophic fires and explosions have many potential causes, including:
- Defective lithium-ion batteries in e-cigarettes, smartphones, electric vehicles, and other devices
- Poorly-made or improperly-installed solar panels, backup generators, and household appliances (such as washers, dryers, and stoves)
- Improperly stored chemicals, such as paint and solvents
- Gas line problems
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a fire or explosion, you may have already discovered that these claims are anything but simple. Many victims have multiple legal claims involving premises liability, products liability, and other causes of action. Any time there are competing insurance claims, it’s in your best interest to discuss your case with an experienced personal injury lawyer.
At Phelan Petty, we represent explosion and fire victims who have complex cases. Because we focus on claims involving defective and dangerous products and other complicated personal injury claims, we have the knowledge and experience required to handle these cases and take on manufacturers, their insurance companies, and their legal teams. Contact us for a free, no-risk case evaluation today.
Why are lithium-ion batteries so dangerous?
Manufacturers and users like the efficiency of lithium-ion batteries since they store a remarkable amount of power in a small space. And because they’re not a new technology, many manufacturers use these batteries without a second thought.
However, the recent outbreak of lithium-ion battery-related fires and explosions involving e-cigarettes, Samsung smartphones, hoverboards, and even electric cars should make everyone concerned.
To be clear, many lithium-ion batteries are safe. Sony introduced the first mass-marketed lithium-ion batteries back in 1991, and these batteries are part of our daily lives today. However, making a lithium battery requires the use of highly flammable substances, and defective lithium-ion batteries can catch on fire or explode, causing catastrophic injuries.
We work with clients who have been burned by e-cigarettes and vape devices
Perhaps no type of consumer device poses as much risk for a fire or explosion due to a defective lithium-ion battery as an e-cigarette or “vape pen”-type device. The reason is that e-cigarette batteries are housed differently than the batteries used in most other portable electronic devices.
The metal tube or “can” that houses e-cigarette batteries has the weakest structural point at the ends, where it has been sealed. When the seal ruptures due to runaway pressure inside the cylinder, a violent explosion can ensue. This explosion can even cause the burning battery or the container end to shoot off like a small rocket.
Due to the proliferation of cheaply-made Chinese lithium-ion batteries and the re-wrapping and selling by Chinese companies of rejected, defective batteries, we have seen many cases where a loose battery explodes in a consumer’s pocket or purse. These explosions often result in serious burns to the victim’s leg, groin, and hands.
You can visit YouTube and search “e-cigarette explosion” to see what happens when this type of explosion occurs inside a victim’s pocket or while the consumer is holding the device — but be warned, the results are graphic.
We’ll fight for fair compensation after a fire or explosion
At Phelan Petty, we have the technical knowledge to properly investigate battery-related explosions and identify the cause. We can determine whether your injuries were caused by a manufacturing or design defect or whether the company failed to properly warn you of the risk of explosion or fire. And if you choose us to represent you, we’ll use our extensive experience handling defective product claims to fight relentlessly for you until your case reaches a resolution.
If you or someone you love has been seriously hurt in an explosion or fire, contact us today to get a free, no-risk assessment of your case from an experienced Virginia injury attorney.