On August 10, 2016, in Silver Springs, Maryland, an apartment fire and explosion resulted in the deaths of seven people. The fire and explosion also injured more than thirty people and displaced more than eighty families. Officials reported that the natural gas explosion occurred in the meter room of the Flower Branch apartment complex. After the explosion, there was a natural gas-fed fire that consumed the apartments above and adjacent to the source of the fire.
Investigators are still working to determine the precise cause of the fire, but know that leaking gas built up in the room until the explosion was sparked. Investigators will also look at the gas transmission equipment for possible defects.
Residents of the complex had been complaining of the smell of gas around the apartments for weeks prior to the explosion. A former Flower Branch employee reported that the smell of gas was a common complaint during the time she was employed there.
On November 2, two lawsuits were filed on behalf of the victims. One lawsuit seeks damages for the personal injuries and wrongful deaths that resulted from the explosion. The second lawsuit seeks damages for all other residents of the complex that were affected by the explosion. The suits were filed against the gas company (Washington Gas) and the apartment managers (Kay Management). According to a news release, the lawsuits allege that Washington Gas failed to ensure the security of its residents by failing to repair the gas leak, failing to identify the leak, and failing to warn residents or call for an evacuation.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries resulting from a fire or explosion, contact an attorney at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner by calling 713-396-3964 or toll free at 800-594-4884.