Apartment Explosion in Silver Spring at Friendly Garden Apartments

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Cut gas line caused Silver Spring apartment blast

Montgomery County, Maryland, officials say the Silver Spring apartment blast that injured 14 people last week came after a maintenance worker trying to unclog a drain cut a gas pipe instead of a waste pipe, and the incident will be classified as an accident.

All residents of the Friendly Garden Apartments have been accounted for the day after a massive blast and fire reduced an apartment building to rubble and sent more than ten people to the hospital. The massive explosion set fire to three other buildings, causing one unit to collapse. Fire officials stayed on the scene throughout the weekend, working to put out the remaining fires and any additional victims who may be trapped inside the rubble.

At Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C., our thoughts go out to all the victims at the Friendly Garden Apartments and nearby buildings that this fire has impacted. In moments like this, it’s important to know your rights. With years of experience assisting injured victims of situations like this, we are here to assist victims of this explosion. 


What We Know About the Explosion at the Friendly Garden Apartments

The security camera of a Silver Spring citizen in a nearby apartment residence captured video of the explosion that tore through the apartment building. The video shows the large fire burning through the outer wall of the structure followed by the explosion. In the aftermath, parts of the building could be seen collapsing as a gray cloud of debris enveloped much of the part of the building where the explosion occurred.

Investigators combing through the rubble of the Friendly Gardens apartments had found evidence of what appears to be a cut gas line. Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services Chief Scott Goldstein provided a step-by-step account of the moments leading up to the blast.  

Prior to the cut gas line, maintenance of the apartment complex were assisting a resident in the first floor apartment with a clogged drain. Maintenance used a “snake” in an attempt to remove the clog from the drain and went down to the basement level and unknowingly cut into a 1.5 inch gas pipe line, which he apparently mistook for a waste drain pipe. After cutting the pipe, the worker secured the end with a cap and returned to the first floor apartment. 

A flash fire occurred once maintenance returned to the first floor apartment, which is when both maintenance and resident began to exit the apartment and were in a stairwell when the building exploded. Experts believe that the initial flash fire “may have left another source of ignition or something charred or smoldering, which led to the follow0on significant explosion that is seen in the video recording. 

What This Means for the Community in Silver Spring, MD

The apartment explosion in Silver Springs is a stark reminder of the dangers of living in an apartment building. This incident should serve as a wake-up call for all residents in multi-unit facilities to ensure they have working smoke detectors and are familiar with emergency evacuation procedures.

In the event of a fire, it is important to remember not to panic. Stay calm and exit the building in an orderly fashion. If you cannot escape on your own, ask someone for help. Do not try to re-enter the building until it has been declared safe by firefighters.

Your Legal Rights

If you have been the victim of an apartment fire, it is important to know that you have rights. If the fire was caused by negligence on the part of the landlord, property manager, PEPCO or Washington Gas, or any other utility, you may be able to recover damages for your injuries, lost wages, and property damage. Displaced residents may also be able to recover relocation costs. Contact a personal injury attorney today to learn more about your legal rights after an apartment fire.

What We Can Do to Help You

The Washington, D.C. personal injury lawyers with Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. have a proven track record of success helping clients obtain the maximum compensation possible for injuries they have suffered due to the negligence of others. Our firm has consistently demonstrated we have the expertise needed to help our clients see that justice is served. We have the resources needed to perform thorough investigations of all the circumstances contributing to a personal injury case, gathering the evidence needed to establish liability and negligence.  The law firm represented several parties who were injured as a result of the Flower Branch Apartments explosion in Silver Spring, and our lawyers understand what is involved in litigating serious injury cases caused by explosions.  

Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. has achieved more than $500 million in verdicts and settlements, and our attorneys have more than a century of combined legal experience. Two of our partners are certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Our firm has also earned the highest AV® Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®, the most respected attorney-ranking service organization in the United States. Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. attorneys work passionately on behalf of our clients to help them secure fair compensation – there is no type of case that is too complex for us to litigate. 

We Will Get You Fair Compensation

For more than 50 years, the Washington DC personal injury lawyers of Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. have successfully represented individuals and families who have been injured or lost loved ones as the result of someone else’s negligence. 

Here is a small sample of some our successful verdicts and settlements: 

  • $15 million for a woman who was permanently paralyzed from the neck down as a result of being struck by a stray bullet.
  • $6 million on behalf of a man who suffered a brain injury as a result of a rear-end collision.
  • $5 million medical malpractice settlement on behalf of a 14-year-old client who suffered a severe brain injury as a result of a doctor’s inappropriate use of a chemical product.
  • $4.8 million on behalf of a severely injured man when his motorcycle struck a trailer being pulled by a minivan.
  • $4.5 million for a woman who was seriously injured in a pedestrian accident after being struck from behind by a transit bus in a crosswalk.

See additional examples of our case victories and settlements on our “Case Results” page.

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer Today for Legal Representation

If you are looking for the highest level representation available for your personal injury case, turn to Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. Our firm has helped clients recover more than $500 million in compensation, and we have more than 100 years of combined experience. All of our partners are recognized by Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers®, and our firm includes three past presidents of the Trial Lawyers Association of Metropolitan Washington, D.C. 

We work to help our clients obtain fair settlement offers to compensate them for the injuries they’ve suffered, but our attorneys are extremely well-equipped to go to trial if needed. Call (202) 659-8600  or contact us online to get the proven legal representation you deserve.

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