Forensic Consulting Services

Only highly experienced professionals can perform the complex tasks of uncovering the origin and cause of a fire or explosion. By evaluating the circumstances surrounding what happened and why, VERTEX is able to provide our clients with the technical expertise needed for them to determine coverage in a timely manner, reduce claim costs, combat fraud, and ultimately achieve closure with a solid, court defensible understanding of events and outcomes.

Fire Origin & Cause

Using a full service approach and in a manner consistent with the Scientific Method and guidelines of NFPA 921, our NFPA 1033 qualified experts apply the highest level of professional competence in their investigative skills and techniques. VERTEX provides evidence collection, chain of custody as well as incident reporting, providing our customers with solid and reliable determination of origin and cause that will withstand the challenges of litigation.

Failure Analysis

Through scientific analysis, VERTEX can quickly and accurately determine whether the root cause of the fire or explosion was due to an electrical or mechanical component, human error, natural events, or arson.

Fire Investigation Liability, Subrogation & Litigation Support

VERTEX experts assist the insurance client and litigator by having highly trained and qualified professionals conduct site investigations that can determine the potential existence of third party culpability. VERTEX experts are experienced in reporting, depositions, and court testimony regarding fire and explosion incidents.

Vehicle and Marine Fire Loss Investigations

Our experts are available to not only investigate the origin and cause of structure fires, but also fires that have taken place in motor vehicles, trucks, industrial equipment and  marine vessels.

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Key Personnel

National Division Manager

Henry Stormer, IAAI-CFI

Henry Stormer, IAAI-CFI

Mr. Stormer is the National Division Manager for VERTEX’s Fire Investigation Division. His primary responsibilities include management of origin and cause investigations nationwide for the insurance industry as well as conducting Cause and Origin investigations of fire and explosions. Mr. Stormer has over 30 years of experience investigating fires and explosions both in the public and private sectors. His fields of expertise include: fire and explosion investigations, origin and cause, subrogation, failure analysis, evidence collection and preservation, fire code analysis and research, crime scene investigations, and arson investigations. Mr. Stormer is a Certified Fire Investigator through the International Association of Arson Investigators and the Connecticut State Fire Marshals Office.

News

VERTEX Supports 12th Annual Women in Construction Conference

October 17, 2017

VERTEX is proudly sponsoring and attending the 12th Annual Women in Construction Conference, held in Washington D.C. on Tuesday, October 24th. Since 2006, the conference has provided an avenue for younger women to learn from senior executives and industry professionals and offers networking and mentoring opportunities to all attendees. More than 300 men and women…

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VERTEX Will be at the RealShare Healthcare Conference

October 10, 2017

VERTEX is pleased to participate on a panel of educators in the upcoming RealShare Healthcare Conference in December. The healthcare industry progresses to transform, as it responds to the two-prong directive of serving a growing patient population while controlling the inflation in the price of the services it delivers. In addition to market pressures, the…

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State of the Industry

September 30, 2017

William J. McConnell PE, JD, MSCE, CDT, Chief Executive Officer of VERTEX, Presents his Annual Assessment of the US Economy, Construction and Surety Industries  As our valued customers, we want to share it with you.  S P O I L E R  A L E R T The US market is in its 99th month…

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VERTEX Co-Presenting at CFMA Midwest Regional Conference

September 26, 2017

VERTEX’s Ryan Phillips, EVP, is co-presenting with John E. Sebastian and Lauren E. Rankins of Watt, Tieder, Hoffar & Fitzgerald, LLP at the CFMA Midwest Regional Conference on September 27th in Oak Brook, IL. They are presenting on the topic of construction documentation and how to successfully manage risk and preserving claims.

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VERTEX Speaking at the Surety Association of Canada AGM Young Professionals Event

September 22, 2017

We are pleased to announce that Andrew Zagorski, Division Manager of VERTEX’s Canadian subsidiary, VTX Consulting Services Inc., will be speaking at the Surety Association of Canada Young Professionals Event on Thursday, September 28th. The event, generously sponsored by Travelers, will cover the ‘2 of the Cs of Surety: Character & Claims’.  Surety professionals know the…

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Blog

Winter Fire Safety

September 28, 2017

As we enter autumn it’s a great time to begin preparations for a fire safe winter in buildings and homes.  1 in 6 home fires in the United States are attributed to heating equipment, as are 1 in 5 residential fire deaths. The single most important action that can be taken by home and building…

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Fire - How it Affects Structural Steel Framing

August 24, 2017

Introduction As forensic engineers, it is often our responsibility to assess the structural integrity of a building after a natural disaster or an event from unfortunate circumstances.  It is also our responsibility to determine the necessary repairs that need to be made to the structural framing of the building in order to return it to…

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Case Study: Foreign Object Fire Causation

July 24, 2017

A teenage child of a Massachusetts homeowner was doing a load of laundry during the evening hours of March 19, 2017. The clothes washing and drying appliances were located in the basement of the home and had been installed by a major appliance retailer approximately one year prior to the date of the fire. The…

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The State of the Economy - Where Are We Headed?

June 2, 2017

Over the first two quarters of 2017, we have witnessed some interesting trends. Year to date, the NASDAQ is up by 15.36% and the S&P500 is up by 8.81%. The NASDAQ growth has largely been fueled by high tech companies such as Apple and Amazon. Despite the robust equities market, the US gross domestic product…

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Understanding Residential Fire Claims - What are the Biggest Residential Fire Causes and Losses?

February 9, 2017

Fire claims to the insurance industry are costly and understanding the risk of fire is important. The United States Fire Administration functioning under the control of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and FEMA compiles statistical fire data annually.  This data, submitted by the nation’s fire departments, highlights the vast array of damage inflicted by fire…

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