2021 Fire Science and Litigation Seminar Agenda

2021 Fire Science and Litigation Seminar

*Schedule and Speakers subject to change

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Thursday, September 9, 2021

Time (Eastern) Program
10:00 a.m. LIVE BURN at Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute

Join us for exclusive tours of multiple burn demonstration cells at the Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute (MFRI). Experts, who designed and implemented the controlled burns, will provide tours and insight into four burn cells. The experts will also discuss and demonstrate fire scene investigation technology equipment and updates. The event at MFRI will be capped off by a live demonstration of a burn transition to flashover with experts describing and filming the transition in real-time.
Space is limited; separate registration is required. DRI will provide live burn event registrants with transportation from the seminar hotel to MFRI. Lunch is included in the registration fee. Tickets are $120 per person and are non-refundable. Registration for the live burn is on the seminar registration page (scroll to the bottom of the page when registering). The deadline is September 1 at 12 p.m.
6:00 p.m. Registration and Networking Reception

Friday, September 10, 2021

Time (Eastern) Program
7:00 a.m. Registration and Continental Breakfast
8:00 a.m. Welcome and Introduction

Kathryn A. (Katy) Regier, Sandberg Phoenix, Kansas City, MO
James E. Weatherholtz, Womble Bond Dickinson, Charleston, SC
8:15 a.m. Cross-Examination of Fire Experts

A mock cross-examination of a fire expert plus related tips and strategy.

Frederick O. Ferrand, Swift, Currie, McGhee & Hiers, LLP, Atlanta, GA
Randy Watson, IAAI-CFI, S-E-A, Duluth, GA
9:15 a.m. Lessons Learned - Explosion Case (Joint Session with Strictly Auto)

Discussions regarding a high-profile product liability wrongful death case stemming from a food truck propane explosion, including liability and evidentiary issues and analysis.

Steve Taub, U-Haul International, Inc., Phoenix, AZ
William A. Posey, Keating Muething & Klekamp PLL, Cincinnati, OH
10:00 a.m. Refreshment Break
10:15 a.m. Litigation Trends & Outside Counsel

Panel discussion on litigation trends by in-house counsel, including the ins and outs of working with outside counsel.

Sean C. Griffin, Dykema Gossett, Washington, D.C.

Patrick Barry, Emerson Electric Co., Commercial & Residential Solutions, St. Louis, MO
Kristine Campbell, Director of Litigation, U-Haul International, Phoenix, AZ
11:00 a.m. Reliability of Eyewitness Testimony

Strategies for critical evaluation and accuracy enhancement of eyewitness testimony.

Benjamin Knox, Ph.D., P.E., Colwell Consulting LLC, Scottsdale AZ
12:00 p.m. DRI Cares Speaker – CASA Washington, D.C.

CASA for Children DC connects specially-trained volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocates to help support vulnerable and at-risk youth in foster care and the juvenile justice system.
12:10 p.m. Lunch (On your own)
1:10 p.m. Live Burn Data Analysis and Rundown (Joint Session with Strictly Auto)

Live burn data analysis – experts will discuss fire science issues using video, photos and data from live burn cells and flash over demonstration.

Scott E. Dillon, PE, IAAI-CFE, CVFI, ESi, Plymouth, MN
Adam Goodman, PE, CFPS, IAAI-CFI, CFEI, CVFI, S-E-A, Glen Burnie, MD
Andrew Paris, PE, CFEI, Jensen Hughes, Minneapolis, MN
David Anderson, Ph.D., PE, CFEI, Exponent, Atlanta, GA
Hernán Mercado-Corujo, ESi, Minneapolis, MN
2:30 p.m. Importance of Proper Evidence Collection

Increase your knowledge about proper evidence collection to make the time spent at a fire scene focused and worthwhile. Learn tips on how to avoid expectation bias, improve your understanding of potential ignition sources, awareness of what fire patterns can and cannot reveal, and how to be sure relevant fire scene artifacts are secured and preserved.

Richard B. Marzola P.E., IAAI-CFI, S-E-A, Columbus, OH
Sarah MacGill Marr, Riley Bennett Egloff LLP, Indianapolis, IN
3:15 p.m. Refreshment Break
3:30 p.m.

Live Burn Technology – Fire Scene Investigations - 3 Quick Hits

Discussion of live burn technology stations with applications to fire scene investigations.

Nicholas A. Nava, P.E., CFEI, Exponent, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) Modeling
Amy E. Gray, Ph.D., P.E., ESi– Propane Behavior, Systems and Equipment

Andrew Paris, PE, CFEI, Jensen Hughes, Minneapolis, MN

4:30 p.m. NFPA 921 - Articulating the Next Steps in a Dynamic Document

A guide to fire and explosion investigations - updates, trends, current issues.

Eric M. Benstock, P.E., IEng, C.F.E.I., McDowell Owens Engineering, Houston TX
Nestor Camara,  B.Sc. IAAI-C.F.I. ,NAFI-CVFI, McDowell Owens Engineering, Houston, TX
5:15 p.m. Fire Science and Litigation SLG Meeting
6:00 p.m. Networking Reception

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Time (Eastern) Program
7:00 a.m. Registration and Continental Breakfast
7:00 a.m. DRI Women in the Law Breakfast

Join your friends and colleagues Saturday morning for a joint Women in the Law Breakfast with the attendees from DRI’s Strictly Automotive Seminar and the Fire Science and Litigation Seminar. Don’t miss the opportunity to build your book of business, strengthen old relationships, make new ones, and much more!
For more information on the Women in the Law Breakfast, please contact Katy Regier.
8:00 a.m. Opening Remarks and Introductions

Kathryn A. (Katy) Regier, Sandberg Phoenix, Kansas City, MO
Andrew E. Stead, McMillan LLP, Calgary, Alberta
8:15 a.m. Fire Protection Systems

Fire Suppression and Fire Alarm Systems: These safety and warning systems are only as effective as they’re given a chance to be. From painted sprinkler heads to buzzed or impaired occupants - a discussion of factors that can delay response and reaction time to these critical systems.

Jamie McAllister, Ph.D., P.E., C.F.I., FireTox LLC, New Market, MD
Melanie H. Stevens, McCoy Leavitt Laskey LLC, Falmouth, ME
9:15 a.m. Ethics: Avoiding Privilege Pitfalls (Joint Session with Strictly Auto)

Recent developments in legal ethics, including attorney-client privilege and use of experts, with a focus on in-house counsel issues.

Amy Richardson, Harris, Wiltshire & Grannis, LLP, Raleigh, NC
10:15 a.m. Refreshment Break
10:30 a.m. Supreme Court Update and Insider Information (Joint Session with Strictly Auto)

This dynamic presentation will focus on the United States Supreme Court’s recent rulings and the big cases awaiting decision with a special focus on cases and issues of importance to business litigator.

Thomas H. Dupree, Jr., Gibson Dunn, Washington, D.C.
11:15 a.m. Burden of Proof Issues - No Product

Plaintiff’s burden of proof when product at issue has been consumed, lost in the fire or accidentally spoliated, and responding defense strategies.

Stu Goldberg, Eastman & Smith, Toledo, OH
12:00 p.m. Interplay Between Counsel and Fire Investigators

The interplay and best practices between counsel and fire investigators, in both the public and private sectors.

Chelsea Smith, Tucker Ellis, Cleveland, OH
1:00 p.m. Adjourn

DRI Cares

CASA GAL for ChildrenThe Fire Science and Litigation Section is pleased to continue the good work of DRI Cares through CASA for Children DC. CASA DC connects specially trained volunteer Court Appoint-ed Special Advocates with vulnerable and at-risk youth in foster care and the juvenile justice system.

CASA volunteers are appointed and sworn in by judges in order to fully investigate a youth’s circumstances and advocate for an outcome in the youth’s best interest. CASA volunteers develop a mentor-like relationship with their youth and advocate for greater outcomes and the opportunity to thrive.

A CASA speaker will share more information on this organization in a short presentation. Donations for CASA will be collected during the seminar. Please consider contributing to CASA’s good work for youth. Learn more about CASA and donate.