Chemicals and Petrochemicals

The chemical industry is diverse and highly specialized — just as an expert witness and consulting firm should be. With expertise in basic chemicals, fertilizers, olefins, plastics, aromatics, and a wide variety of specialty chemicals, we’ve formed an especially strong bond with the chemical industry.

What’s the product
of this process?

From assessing new technologies to navigating construction and regulatory issues, our experience has been instrumental in the valuation of facilities and businesses, preparation of insurance claims, and evaluation of intellectual property issues.

Case Studies

Oxygen Pipeline Explosion – Incident Investigation

April 19, 2023

A large oxygen pipeline suddenly exploded with a massive fire, causing significant damage to a manufacturing facility. We were engaged to review process data, integrity management inspection data, and the subarctic ambient environmental conditions to opine on the origin and cause of the loss of primary containment. As a result, we identified a most likely cause based on a reasonable degree of engineering certainty that facilitated settlement discussions.

Hurricane Leads to Flood of Claims

April 19, 2023

Class action lawsuits against a petrochemical plant and a petroleum refinery alleged that hurricane flooding was exacerbated by ongoing project work and poor coordination between the two integrated facilities. Baker & O’Brien reviewed project plans and execution records to evaluate project management compared to industry best practice, and assessed the working relationship and level of coordination between the facilities. Our expert report provided opinions on project governance and the degree of coordination between the facilities, including the effectiveness of the site’s emergency response plan.

Static Electricity Sparks Dispute

April 1, 2013

This insurance dispute pertains to whether regulatory changes justify facility improvement costs that exceed replacement-in-kind. Following a fire initiated by static electricity, the owner and insurer disagreed as to whether a different and more costly design was required to ensure plant safety. The pre-arbitration mediation required expertise in applicable engineering codes, normal industry practice, and fire origin and cause expertise pertaining to hydrocarbons and static charge.