Legal Guide

Gas Explosion Lawsuits: Key Steps for Building a Strong Legal Case

The natural gas many Americans use in our homes is transported via roughly three million miles of pipelines across the United States. Unfortunately, despite the wide usage of natural gas, there are enormous dangers associated with this vital infrastructure.

According to official statistics, explosions caused by gas leaks have injured or killed thousands of people and at times even obliterated whole communities. All of this has continued to happen consistently over the last decade. Many times, there is little to no warning before this latent danger erupts suddenly.

Needless to say, gas explosions happen much more frequently than most people believe, and they often cause severe injury or even death. Adding insult to injury, the majority of gas explosions can be traced back to carelessness or negligence.

When you’ve sustained injuries in a gas explosion, you should retain the assistance of a competent gas explosion lawyer immediately. An accident attorney who is well-versed in gas explosions can help you build the strongest claim possible to preserve your legal rights and secure the compensation you deserve.

Can You File an Injury Claim After a Gas Explosion?

If you were hurt in a gas explosion, you have the right to pursue a personal injury case for your injuries and other damages. If your loved one died in a gas explosion, you may be able to pursue a wrongful death claim.

As the plaintiff, you must show that the defendant's conduct constituted carelessness under the circumstances of your accident and that the defendant's negligence contributed directly to your injuries.

The specifics of your case will determine who, if anybody, is responsible for your losses. A faulty water heater, for instance, might be the basis of your claim if you can prove that the manufacturer was careless. In this scenario, you may be able to sue the maker or manufacturer of the water heater.

On the other hand, if the explosion was caused by improperly installed or operated equipment, you may also have a claim for negligent maintenance against the installation professional. After all, professionals in these specialized fields are expected to hold a higher degree of competence and may be considered negligent if they fall short of this expectation.

How to Prove Negligence in a Gas Explosion Accident

Similar to other types of personal injury claims, you must establish the negligence of another party to collect damages after a gas explosion. Four main components are used to establish fault in a gas explosion claim:

  1. The defendant owed the victim (or plaintiff) a reasonable duty of care: You need to prove that the defendant owed you a duty of care before you can file a claim against them. For instance, gas utility providers and gas tank manufacturers have a heightened duty of care to exercise extreme caution and attention while delivering their services or goods using compressed natural gas.
  2. The defendant failed to use reasonable care or violated this duty of care: The next step is proving that the defendant was negligent in violating their duty of care. Using the example above, the gas utility provider may have broken their duty of care if they did not double-check installation or otherwise perform their duties with reasonable care.
  3. The defendant’s breach in their duty of care directly caused your injuries: The defendant's violation must also be shown to have directly resulted in your injuries and damages. If you had injuries not caused by the accident or the defendant’s carelessness, you would not be entitled to compensation.
  4. You’ve sustained verifiable injuries and losses as a result of the accident: Last but not least, you will need to show that you sustained real damages. This can usually be evidenced through medical records and bills as well as other documentation which shows the extent to which you have been affected.

It takes meticulous preparation and organizing of evidence and confidential documents to prove negligence in a gas explosion case. Your attorney will help you organize the facts of your case and determine which parties to hold accountable.

Common Damages Caused By Gas Explosions

Damages from a gas explosion caused by negligence may be recovered against the individuals or entities responsible. Injuries sustained in the explosion and the costs to repair property destroyed in the incident are typical examples of these damages.

The first activity in any claim after a gas explosion is usually the insurer granting coverage to the party at fault. If the insurance company doesn't pay up or attempts to settle for too small of an amount, having a lawyer is crucial. At this point you would need to file a personal injury lawsuit to get compensated. You may seek damages for the following:

  • Bills from medical professionals such as ambulance services, primary care physicians, hospitals, and rehabilitation centers
  • Estimated future expenses for injury-related medical care and assistance
  • Reduced earnings from time away from work or permanent disability
  • Loss of use, value, and expenses to replace real or personal property
  • Wrongful death damages for funeral and burial costs after a gas explosion victim's death
  • Non-economic losses, like pain and suffering or loss of consortium

Who Could Be Responsible For a Gas Explosion?

After a catastrophic event like a gas explosion, your attorney will oversee a comprehensive investigation of your case to determine who is at fault. The truth is, investigating a gas explosion that has resulted in significant injuries and extensive property damage may uncover several parties at fault. If negligence can be found anywhere along the chain of people involved in the gas explosion, ranging from the gas provider itself to the property owner, third party contractors and more, they can all be held responsible in your lawsuit.

Potential parties in a gas explosion-related lawsuit include but are not limited to the following:

  • Landlords and property owners
  • Contractors and builders
  • Maintenance professionals
  • Installation technicians
  • Utility companies
  • City or county authorities who provide utility services
  • Wholesalers and sellers of natural gas and propane
  • Public bus networks in cities and counties that run on natural gas
  • Manufacturers of gas products

Seek Help From a Gas Explosion Lawyer

A skilled personal injury attorney from Burg Simpson can guide you through every step of a civil claim to ensure that no crucial steps are missed. You can get a free consultation to talk about the details of your case and find out how much compensation you may be able to collect. There is no need to face financial ruin after suffering injuries or a loss of a loved one in a gas explosion. Hold the responsible party accountable and get the financial resources you need to move forward.

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