Accident Reconstruction Experts

Accidents happen every day, involving motor vehicles, aircraft, commercial equipment or machinery; and they happen everywhere, from roadways to manufacturing plants.

In the aftermath of these accidents, questions arise as to what precipitated the event and where the responsibility lies. Rimkus provides experienced forensic analysis professionals to sift through the myriad details to find the key elements leading to the accident and communicate to other parties -- including juries -- exactly what happened and why.

We have investigated accidents of all kinds:

  • Vehicle accidents of all kinds:  low-speed and high-speed; multi-vehicle pile-ups; accidents involving cars, trucks, busses, trains and stationary objects; as well as bicycles, scooters, motorcycles, ATVs and snowmobiles
  • Construction site accidents involving machinery such as cranes, earthmovers, backhoes and bulldozers machinery and equipment failures resulting in large losses
  • Accidents at industrial sites and manufacturing plants
  • Oilfield fires, explosions, blowouts and other incidents
  • Personal injuries such as impalements and crush injuries as well as injuries stemming from fires and explosions, engulfments and drownings
  • Aviation accidents

We have examined not only the vehicles and machinery involved, but also the impact of the environment surrounding the accident, including:

We also examine the aftermath of the accident, including:

Vehicle Accidents

Vehicle accidents are a fact of life. Rimkus' forensic engineering experts are trained in evaluating all types of vehicle accidents, from low-speed accidents to collisions involving fixed objects, automobiles, SUVs, tractor trailers, buses, motorcycles, bicycles, pedestrians or trains. The latest technology is used to assist in the reconstruction process.

Computerized mapping equipment is used, when appropriate, to map collision site evidence in great detail. Crash data recorded in passenger vehicles and 18-wheelers is downloaded using a crash data retrieval tool to determine how the vehicle was operating before the accident (click here to see those vehicles that we can access). The latest computer software is used to analyze all phases of an accident. When requested, we also produce computer-generated animation to help explain the accident to a jury. 

Construction Accidents

A construction site is full of dangers, even for those with extensive experience. Minor injuries are an every day occurrence, and major or even fatal injuries are always lurking. Workers are subject to falls, crushing injuries, electrocution, engulfment and even drowning. Heavy equipment of all kinds is in use including earthmovers, bulldozers, backhoes, cranes and forklifts. Smaller equipment—equally dangerous in its own right—includes welders, riveters, pneumatic nailers and a host of even smaller personal tools. Even construction elevators take their toll. Our construction experts have years of experience on construction sites all over the U.S. and in 70 foreign countries and are well aware of these dangers. We examine the site, the equipment in use and procedures in place—whether they were followed or not—to determine how the accident happened. Then they can quickly advise as to the causation so steps can be taken to prevent recurrence. Our Biomechanical experts examine the injuries that are reported and determine whether the evidence supports the accident as described. Mechanical engineers investigate failed equipment, toppled cranes and similar problems to determine the cause and possibly suggest subrogation opportunities. Electrical engineers inspect equipment for damage and assess whether repair or replacement is needed. Our Financial Forensics Experts review business interruption and lost profits claims. Our Animation and Trial Graphics group produces demonstrative evidence in the form of graphics, videos and animated recreations to support courtroom testimony.  And our certified industrial hygienists investigate problems with toxic fumes from welding, the dangers of working in enclosed spaces, and similar problems. We know construction from groundbreaking to handing over the keys.

DOT Compliance

When commercial vehicles are involved in collisions, questions regarding DOT compliance are often raised. Rimkus’ experts have the background and knowledge to inspect commercial vehicles for DOT compliance and “Out-of-Service” conditions. We perform full air brake inspections (even if damaged) and examine drivers' logs for compliance with hours-of-service regulations.

Roadway Design and Construction

Sometimes collisions occur because of roadway geometry, deterioration of the roadway surface, defects in materials or improper design. We evaluate roadway parameters, ambient lighting for nighttime collisions, traffic controls and intersection light timing to determine the role, if any, they played in the collision. We also evaluate roadway issues such as pavement edge drop-off, visibility obstructions, temporary traffic controls during construction and maintenance, railroad crossings and pavement deterioration.

Oilfield and Energy Industry Accidents

The oilfield is a dangerous place, as are the downstream facilities that process and refine the products or generate power. Accidents occur due to both human error and equipment failure. Many of those accidents result in injury or death. It is important to assess the causes of those accidents, the extent of equipment damage and the extent of economic damages to injured workers. Rimkus experts are experienced in all of these areas and can assist in the analysis of the accident, valuation of the damages and prompt resumption of operations.

Industrial and Manufacturing Sites

Regardless of the products being made, industrial and manufacturing facilities can be dangerous environments--especially for personal injuries.  Heavy equipment presents opportunities for crush injuries.  Moving assembly lines present pinch points for hands and fingers. Industrial chemicals can create dangerous environmental conditions. Electrocution opportunities can be found in all corners of a facility. Mining operations present their own, unique kinds of accidents and injuries. In the aftermath of these incidents, Rimkus forensic engineers inspect the equipment to determine whether the cause was poor design, equipment failure, or inadequate maintenance; we evaluate operating procedures for reasonableness and safety considerations; and we investigate to determine if the cause was simply improper employee actions.  Our experience around the world in 70 foreign countries has resulted in our addressing incidents and accidents of virtually all kinds.

Aircraft and Aviation

Through our subsidiary Rimkus Analytics, we investigate all types of aircraft accidents and provide reconstruction and animation of the events using state-of-the-art 4-D graphics. We offer experienced aviation witnesses with expertise in:

  • Fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft
  • Aerospace vehicles
  • Flight test operations
  • Economic analysis of accidents and resultant damages

Related Projects

Puerto Rico Gas Explosion
Sugar Refinery Wastewater Treatment Facility Explosion
 

To better serve our clients and provide rapid response to assignments, Rimkus maintains offices in the following locations: