“In my career in the gases industry, when working in the fields of incident investigation and subsequent design improvement, I always found WHA both knowledgeable and innovative … The inquiring mind-set of WHA people and their facilities are leading edge and biased towards experiment and investigation, as well as being capable of ensuring product compliance with standards.”

David Birch

Retired, Linde/BOC

We get the science right.

The aftermath of fires, explosions, and other accidents is often chaotic and confusing, but our meticulous approach is designed to eliminate the mystery. WHA’s failure analysis methodology emphasizes data collection and analysis, systematic evaluation of physical evidence, and engineering analysis to reconstruct the sequence of events leading to an incident with the goal of determining corrective actions and/or liability.  We provide clear answers and actionable recommendations.

  • Scene documentation and evidence collection

    WHA has established processes and tools to perform incident scene inspection, documentation, and evidence collection in accordance with industry standards.

  • Evidence examination and analysis

    WHA has processes and tools to inspect and analyze evidence at our forensic laboratory, including chemical and metallurgical analyses.

  • Incident reconstruction

    WHA engineers use advanced analysis tools such as fault tree analysis (FTA), finite element analysis (FEA), and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) to evaluate and reconstruct accidents.

  • Research and testing

    WHA performs fire, explosion, and other testing to evaluate, verify, and re-create incidents in our one-of-a-kind test facility.

  • Standard of Care

    WHA engineers are knowledgeable in the latest codes, standards, and regulations used to evaluate the duties of responsible parties.

  • Reporting

    When requested, WHA provides technical engineering reports, affidavits, Rule 26 reports, expert disclosures, or expert reports.

  • Expert witness services

    WHA engineers are experienced in deposition and trial testimony.

Leading the advancement of oxygen safety and
fire science.

WHA’s engineers are recognized among the world’s leading experts in incident investigations involving oxygen and other hazardous fluids.  We’ve analyzed hundreds of incidents, from small medical device fires to large industrial explosions. Our findings have frequently influenced the industry, leading directly to new international standards that continue to save lives and protect property around the globe.

Strength in numbers.

Fires and explosions are typically a once-in-a-lifetime traumatic event, but we deal with these incidents every day. Our experience and unique capabilities will bring understanding to your failure incident related to oxygen or other hazardous fluids.

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    Years combined experience

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    Incidents investigated

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    Countries served

Oxygen and Oxidizer Related Failures.

WHA engineers take the mystery out of oxygen fires using their unparalleled oxygen fire expertise, spanning nearly all industries that use oxygen and other non-oxygen oxidizers. Beginning in the 1980s, WHA engineers have provided oxygen compatibility guidance, training, and failure analysis for the aerospace, welding, commercial gas, petrochemical, medical oxygen, and medical device industries. WHA has investigated hundreds of fires and incidents in most industries that use oxygen and have developed tools to harden systems against oxygen-related fire hazards.

Our capabilities

Hazardous Fluid Related Failures.

WHA’s engineers are recognized among the world’s leading experts in fire investigations involving oxy-fuel, air-fuel, and other reactive or hazardous fluids. We’ve investigated hundreds of incidents, from small welding system fires to high-order industrial explosions. Our blast analysis and blast testing capabilities have helped set new standards and influenced the industrial, petrochemical, gas distribution industries.

Our Capabilities

Pressure Equipment Failures.

WHA engineers have decades of experience designing, fabricating, operating, and testing high pressure components and systems. Our engineers are trained and knowledgeable regarding standards and codes for pressure vessels, piping, and components, and have the tools to evaluate pressure related failures.

Our capabilities

Mechanical and Electrical Failures.

WHA has 30+ years of background and experience evaluating mechanical failures using mechanical engineering design principles, metallurgical testing, and its unique 3D microscopy to evaluate the root cause of failed mechanical equipment.

WHA also has exceptional experience and test capability in evaluating electrical sources of ignition in products and flammable gasses and oxygen enriched environments including the unique ignition mechanisms associated with ESD, Arc Tracking, and unusual component failure modes. WHA is specially equipped to help uncover the role of a suspected electrical failure in a fire incident, especially in oxygen-enriched or air/oxy-fuel atmospheres.

Our capabilities

Forensic Engineering and Expert Witness.

WHA has provided forensic engineering litigation support services since 1974. Our emphasis has always been on understanding the physical evidence, the standard of care, and finding the cause of an event using the highest level of integrity and scientific/engineering reliability.  The scientific method of documentation, evaluation, analysis, experimentation, observation and discovery is utilized to ensure our opinions and conclusions are founded on solid science. WHA is committed to the understanding and integrity provided by this approach and WHA strives to live up to this standard in all the services it provides.

Our capabilities

Data-driven results
lead to safety solutions.

We don’t just investigate WHY failures occur; we’re uniquely qualified to explore HOW they can be prevented from happening again. Our investigations often lead to risk analysis and testing of related systems. We can also provide customized technical training to make sure your personnel are up to date on industry standard oxygen safety practices.

  • Hazard Analysis

    Analyze and mitigate your risks before an incident can occur.

  • Testing

    Test your materials and components for qualification, compatibility, and conformance.

  • Training

    Equip your staff with cutting-edge oxygen safety training and customizable multi-level content.


Let’s talk.

We’re in the business of finding answers. Contact us to request a free, confidential consultation with an experienced engineer who can help you better understand your needs and our solutions.

Request a consultation