Assessment of Fire Damage

The recovery from a worksite fire can prove difficult and complicated. Stress Engineering Services supports a variety of Upstream, Midstream, and Downstream operations in North America and the U.S. with fire damage assessments.

Our Method

The API 579-1/ASME FFS-1 Standard and Fitness-for-Service are the foundation of our fire damage assessment. We also draw on extensive engineering experience in metal metallurgy and stress analysis. A team of experts establishes heat zones for equipment and creates inspection plans. The equipment’s condition will be determined by the Level 1 to 3 assessment. The final report contains all the information.


While Level 1 inspections are typically only visually inspected, equipment that requires Level 2 or 3 assessment will require a more detailed inspection.

The most commonly used non-destructive exam (NDE), in fire damage assessment, is hardness testing. The steel can be either “hardened” or “softened” by heat exposure. Softening indicates lower strength while hardening indicates greater strength and less ductility.

You may also use the following types of inspections:

Visual testing (VT), which includes inspections for distortion, bowing, sagging, and corrosion. Our drone services may be used as part of VT.

Laser scanning: Use our fixed-position terrestrial scanner with a high-resolution metrology grade scanner to determine plumb, out-of-round, distortion, and metal loss.

Surface cracking is done by magnetic particle testing (MT).

Eddy current testing (ET), a method for measuring the surface cracking and near-surface cracking properties of magnet materials, is used.

Ultrasonic testing is used to measure wall thickness using a straight beam and crack detection with a shear wave.

AET (Acoustic emission Testing) – For efficient worldwide inspection that focuses on cracking.

Field Metallographic Replication is used to examine the surface structure of the metal without having to remove a piece.

Drone inspection, high-resolution photography, videography

Surveying, videography, and drone inspections

Both fixed-position laser scanning as well high-resolution metrology laser scanning are available.

Our FARO laser scanner can perform fixed position laser scanning. The scanner is highly accurate and allows for precise characterization of the shape and distortions within large vessels and towers. It is available as an internal service and can be integrated with finite element analysis.

High-Resolution Laser Scanners for Metrology Grade Handhelds – Our instrument of choice is the Creaform laser scanner. It is capable of scanning small features with high precision and can be used to identify local deformations or severe pitting. It is also available as an in-house service so you can integrate the data with your subsequent analysis.

Drone photography / Videography & Scanning: Our high-resolution drone inspection capabilities, FAA-licensed pilot, enhance safety and scene documentation.

Assessors at Level 1, 2 and 3

While Level 1 is relatively straightforward, Level 2 or Level 3 assessment requires us to have an in-depth understanding of materials mechanics and plant conditions. This will ensure that the problem does not become too complicated or too complex.

Broad Industry Experience

Our fire damage assessment services have been performed in many oil and gas, petrochemical and gas processing facilities. This includes numerous petroleum refineries and ethylene plants. We also provide pipeline facilities and above- and below-ground storage tanks onshore as well offshore.

A wide range of equipment types are available

A wide range of equipment and structural parts can be used to assess the fire damage. From tall towers to condensate drums, our experts have evaluated everything, from fin-fan coolers and pumps to compressors and blowers, fans and plant piping, tube and shell heat exchangers, and many other components.

Concrete & Structural Steel – Although API 579 focuses on pressure equipment, industrial fires can also include other components such as concrete and structural steel. Our team of structural engineers and civil engineers are very familiar with these components.

Full Spectrum Of Services

We offer many services to help you after a fire. The full range of our services include:

With Certified Fire Investigators, Origin & Cause Investigation –

Assessing Fire Damage – A fitness-for-service assessment of equipment that has been damaged by fire

Forensic/Litigation Assistance – Expert witness support, and forensic investigations

Get in touch with us to find out more about our fire damage assessment services.

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