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Metallurgical / Metallurgy Expert Witnesses

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Iola Goeke
3660 Hartsfield Road
Tallahassee, FL 32303

USA
phone: 850-558-3100
fax: 850-575-8454
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BEC Consulting, LLC was established in 1982. Since that time, we have provided top-level consulting engineering services and accident reconstruction to our clients; law firms, insurance companies, state and local agencies, manufacturing companies, and clients who are seeking product design analysis and other engineering related services.

Our engineers represent a broad range of engineering disciplines which enables us to work on a variety of cases using the team approach. The teams at BEC are comprised of Engineers, Technical Specialists, Graphics Specialists, as well as Research and Administrative Personnel, so that each case is given personal attention and is handled efficiently and effectively. Our offices are located in Tallahassee, Jacksonville and Venice working in almost every state in the United States, including Alaska.

Areas of Expertise:
  • All Areas of Accident Reconstruction - Including Automobile, Tractor-Trailer, Motorcycle/Bicycle & Pedestrian
  • Engineering Consulting
  • FARO 3-D Scanning
  • Black Box Downloads
  • Construction Zone / Roadside Safety
  • Industrial Equipment
  • Failure Analysis
  • Product Design
  • Product Development
  • Material Handling System
  • Biomechanical Analysis
  • Slip / Trip / Fall
  • Computer Animation, Electronic Graphics
Every aspect of our firm is designed to serve our clients needs; conference rooms for mediations and depositions, a research and testing lab, secured evidence storage, facilities for expert inspections, and easy access to airport and hotel facilities for our out-of-town clients. We are truly a full service engineering firm.

Because of this team approach and a commitment to customer service, BEC has attained regional and national recognition as a leader in forensic engineering services and new product development. This excellent example and tireless dedication to serving our client’s needs has resulted in a devoted client base and reputation second to none.

Dr. Charles Benedict, P.E., founded Benedict Engineering Company in 1982 and our name has since changed to BEC Consulting, LLC. He has over 35 years experience in the fields of product and machine design and analysis, vehicular accident reconstruction of all types, and product and system failure analysis. He has designed, developed, manufactured, and tested more than sixty different products and machine systems. Dr. Benedict is well respected in the fields of forensic engineering, product and machine system design and analysis and patenting.

Expertise:
  • Biomechanics
  • Occupant Kinematics
  • Vehicle Restraint Systems
  • Vehicle Controllability
  • Material Handling
  • Patent Infringement
  • Automobile Accidents
  • Pedestrian Accidents
  • General Engineering
  • Product Design
  • Fire and Explosion Analysis
  • Tractor / Trailer Accidents
  • Electrical Issues
  • Dr. Brian Pfeifer, P.E., is also a principal with BEC Consulting, LLC, and has been practicing forensic engineering for over 15 years. He holds several patents on roadside safety devices and studied roadside safety at the University of Nebraska. He is a consulting engineer with a strong background in the design, development, and implementation of roadside safety hardware. His current work consists of vehicular accident reconstruction, analysis of maintenance of traffic issues, premises liability, investigation and analysis of mechanical systems and product failures, and development of automated material-handling systems.

    Expertise:
    • Roadside Hazards
    • Vehicle Controllability
    • Occupant Kinematics
    • Roadway Design
    • Guardrails and Bridges
    • Maintenance of Traffic
    • Roadway Design
  • Automobile Accidents
  • Pedestrian Accidents
  • Tractor / Trailer Accidents
  • Slip / Trip / Fall
  • Product Design
  • General Engineering
  • Mrs. Traci Campbell, P.E., CXLT, is an Industrial engineer with specialties in industrial accident reconstruction, including forklifts, construction machinery, appliances, and manufacturing equipment. Her experience includes vehicular accident reconstruction involving automobiles, trucks, tractor-trailers, and recreational vehicles, as well as slip, trip, and fall analysis, product failure analysis, and workplace-safety related issues.

    Expertise:
    • Industrial Accidents
    • Safety Analysis
    • Product Design / Failure Analysis
    • Slip / Trip / Fall
    • Guarding / Warnings
    • Workplace Safety
    • Bicycle Accidents
    • Confined Spaces
  • OSHA Regulations
  • Pedestrian Accidents
  • Automobile Accidents
  • Tractor / Trailer Accidents
  • Human and Environment Interaction
  • Theme Parks / Recreation Facilities
  • Airbag and Black Box
  • General Engineering
  • Mr. Chris Yates, P.E., is a Mechanical engineer and Principal with our firm, specializing in accident reconstruction. His current work involves the analysis and reconstruction of vehicular accidents, including vehicular dynamics and occupant restraint as well as the investigation of industrial accidents and product analysis.

    Expertise:
    • Black Box Analysis
    • Motorcycle / Bicycle Accidents
    • Mechanical Design
    • Product Guarding Design
    • Fire and Explosion
    • Seat Belt Analysis
  • Automobile Accidents
  • Pedestrian Accidents
  • General Engineering
  • Product Design
  • Tractor / Trailer Accidents
  • Slip / Trip / Fall
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    Gerald O. Davis, PE
    4723 Squaw Valley Court
    Glen Allen, VA
    23060
    VA, DC, MD, WV, NC USA
    phone: 804-967-9129
    fax: 804-967-9130
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    Gerald O. Davis, PE, President and co-owner of DM&ME, has over 40 years experience in Metallurgy and Mechanical Engineering. Mr. Davis is a Forensic Expert in Metallurgy, Corrosion, Mechanical Failures, & Root-Cause Failure Analysis. His recent background includes work as a corrosion researcher, senior engineer, and program manager for Battelle Memorial Institute, DNV, Inc., Henkels & McCoy, Inc., respectively and, since 2004, as president of DM&ME.

    Mr. Davis has been offering Expert Witness Services for the past 12 years for product liability and personal injury evaluations. He is retained for his knowledge of Forensic Engineering and Root-Cause Failure Analysis. Mr. Davis is experienced with depositions and trial testimony. His services include specification and interpretation of metallurgical lab tests, review of mechanical failures and review of physical evidence and its meaning. His findings are presented in clear oral and written reports which he provides to judges and juries in non-technical language.

    Areas of Expertise:
    • Metallurgy
    • Laboratory Testing and Interpretation
    • Corrosion Analysis & Control Methods
    • Mechanical Design Analysis
    View Consulting Profile.
    11/16/2015 · Corrosion
    A common cause of failures in various types of equipment is fatigue failure of bolts that secure parts together. Fatigue in any type of dynamically loaded mechanical component accounts for more than 80% of all failures. This post reviews some important factors in fatigue failure of metallic bolts.

    The working relationship between the attorney and their expert witness in a case can be more effective if a few simple guidelines are followed. These are common sense things but one or more can be overlooked in the frequent day-to-day rush that busy attorneys face. When that happens some of the potential contributions from the expert may be compromised or lost to the detriment of the attorney's client.

    6/30/2015 · Engineering
    Too frequently an attorney will begin to seek a potential expert witness only after having done considerable initial work. Often there is a last minute rush to locate and select specialized technical assistance. These approaches can have expensive consequences. Alternatively, securing a suitable expert early in the litigation process offers the following advantages for the retaining attorney:

    6/2/2015 · Engineering
    Many negative consequences can result from failures of a range of different products that often lead to property & casualty insurance disputes or product liability legal actions. The products may include consumer or industrial goods. Typically the private user or worker is injured or a business incurs significant financial loss. The injured individual, insurance carrier, attorney(s) or industrial manufacturer and user are all interested to confirm what went wrong – and who is liable. Resolution often depends on engineering analysis.

    5/7/2015 · Corrosion
    Clearly it is advantageous to know when corrosion is occurring in operating equipment to avoid future failure. There is extensive literature on this topic. This post is a brief summary of information selected from the four references cited below. Each source includes several other references.

    4/7/2015 · Manufacturing
    "3D printing" or the more descriptive term - additive manufacturing (AM) - has received much publicity in recent years. What is this technology and what are some of its practical features? This blog is a summary of AM and its on-going development to make actual service components using metal alloys. Presented are selected portions of information provided in the two references cited.

    3/3/2015 · Corrosion
    Most engineers know about the danger of galvanic corrosion caused by physical contact between dissimilar metals exposed to a corrosive liquid. However, this possibility is often overlooked and other features of this type of corrosion may not be widely known.

    1/21/2015 · Failure Analysis
    It is essential when beginning a root-cause failure analysis involving metallic materials to collect and maintain the as-found physical evidence properly prior to detailed examinations. This has two objectives. In all cases collecting and protecting the evidence in its undisturbed condition provides the best opportunity to derive meaningful good results from the subsequent analyses. Secondly, in a legal proceeding lack of attention to these matters can produce the accusation of spoilation of evidence. As a minimum this will cause presentation problems for the offending party in the suit. At worst such deficiencies by that party may cause the case to be thrown out.

    12/12/2014 · Corrosion
    Aluminum alloy materials are well known for their light weight and strength-to-weight ratios. They are also susceptible to several forms of corrosion. Relative to other metals, their natural electrochemical potential places them adjacent to other very susceptible (active) metals such as magnesium (Mg) and zinc (Zn) in a traditional galvanic series in seawater. However, Al alloys naturally form a very thin, protective (passive) oxide film on their surface when exposed to oxygen. This film prevents corrosion as long as it is maintained over the surface. Pitting corrosion is a common form of attack on aluminum. This is typically caused by exposure to halide ions, chloride ions being the most common type found in corrosive media, that breakdown the passive film at discreet spots. This permits pits to initiate and grow.

    11/7/2014 · Metallurgy
    Often when engineers consider mechanical fatigue they envision cyclic, reversing stresses in a spinning shaft or possibly the up and down flex of aircraft wings. Rolling contact fatigue (RCF) or the associated mechanical wear is an important, closely related process to the traditional mechanism of fatigue but with distinct differences. RCF is also often known as spalling.

    9/25/2014 · Product Liability
    This term raises some vital issues that the engineer should be aware of when using it. First several definitions are available and thus it is perceived differently by different groups and individuals. From a legal standpoint, in many states, using the term to describe a product that was involved in an incident involving an injury means that the designer or manufacturer of that product may be financially liable for the injury. Engineers sometimes use the term simply to indicate an imperfection in a product without intending its frequent legal use. Further the engineer realizes that no material and no finished product is perfect. However, these variations from perfection do not necessarily mean they were cause for failure and thus the injury that may occur in a given incident. Some product liability attorneys may not readily acknowledge or understand this distinction.

    8/21/2014 · Corrosion
    The optimal time to make decisions and take actions to minimize potential failures of equipment, facilities and components is during their design. This two-part blog post provides an overview of the types of issues involved and specific actions that can be useful to the design engineer. Archived blog posts (at www.dmme-engineering.com) that discuss specifics are provided parenthetically.

    7/15/2014 · Metallurgy
    Four, tri-lobe pumps were damaged and required extensive repair during the latter stages of construction for a modification in a pharmaceutical manufacturing plant. The economic loss was significant and the general contractor for the work paid the plant's owner for the loss. The renovated units were installed and are in use. However, the general contractor then sued one of its subcontractors - a welding contractor that fabricated and completed weld joints between piping sections on the inlet side of the pumps. The general contractor claimed poor quality welds in the piping permitted loosened weld fragments to enter the pumps during the required water flow verification of the system and this caused the damage.

    6/9/2014 · Corrosion
    Most realize that damage due to corrosion of metals is costly - but what specifically is that cost and what is included in the total? A study completed in 2002 sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the National Association of Corrosion Engineers (NACE International) and implemented by CC Technologies Laboratories (now part of DVN) addressed those questions.

    5/2/2014 · Corrosion
    Material selection entails picking an engineering material - either metal alloy or non-metal - that is inherently resistant to the particular corrosive environment and also meets other criteria. Variables that will affect corrosion are established along with materials that may provide suitable resistance for those conditions. Obviously other requirements such as cost and mechanical properties of the potential materials must be considered.

    3/28/2014 · Corrosion
    Pin-hole leaks from a fire-control sprinkler piping system just above the false ceiling of multiple rooms in an office building resulted in a suit against three parties involved with supplying the system. The plaintiff - a financial service organization that owned the building - had much computerized transaction data stored on magnetic tapes in several rooms damaged or destroyed by the incident. The monetary loss was major. The leaks occurred within two years after the system was installed. This period is clearly far short of the expected life of the system. Defendants in the case included the supplier of the piping used in the system, the engineering firm that designed it and the installation contractor.

    2/26/2014 · Corrosion
    A variety of low-voltage electronic devices may fail to operate properly because of exposure to certain corrosive, gaseous environments. Susceptible items include consumer products such as microwave ovens, audio equipment, TV's and personal computers as well as many types of industrial sensors and automatic control devices. Failure generally occurs because of specific application factors. These include the severity of the environment, the presence or absence of atmospheric sealing of components within the device and the metals used at critical internal locations. Frequently complete failure doesn't occur but normal operation is erratic.

    A full size, cylindrical tank trailer pulled by a truck tractor/ cab split open on its lower section at mid-span and released hundreds of gallons of hydrochloric acid (HCl) onto a secondary highway in a northeastern state. When this occurred the truck driver jumped out of the truck's cab and sustained acid burns to his ankles because he was wearing low-quarter shoes.

    12/20/2013 · Failure Analysis
    A severe personal injury incident occurred as a recreational fishing boat was approaching a dock at approximately 20 mph after a day on the water. The large outboard engine (75 HP) on the stern of the boat struck a fixed underwater obstruction, flipped into the boat while still running and amputated the hand of a passenger seated near the engine.

    11/26/2013 · Engineering
    A licensed professional engineer (P.E.) is required to adhere to a Code of Ethics for Engineers in all work he undertakes. However, there are some special criteria when employed as an expert witness.

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    Edward S. George, PE
    President, Principal Investigator
    124 Calle De Leon
    St Augustine FL 32086
    USA
    phone: 904-826-1431
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    Edward George Product Liability Failure Analysis Expert PhotoEdward S. George PE, has over 30 years of experience in the field of Product Liability and Failure Analysis.

    Mr. George earned his BS and MS degrees from the University of Florida Department of Materials Science and Engineering, graduating with a specialty in metallurgy. He is a licensed professional engineer in the State of Florida. Mr. George is a member of The National Society of Professional Engineers, The American Welding Society, The National Association of Forensic Engineers, The Florida Engineering Society, American Water Works Association, and The International Society for Fall Protection.

    Mr. George has experience in a variety of material failures including Metals, Polymers, Plastics, Composites, Ceramics, Glass, and Porcelain.

    Litigation Support - A court-qualified expert, Mr. George has over 13 years of experience and has testified in depositions and trials. His forensic training is complemented by his industrial experience including:
    • Heat Treating of Metals
    • Welding and Joining of Materials
    • Materials Testing and Evaluation
    • Quality Control and Assurance
    • Optical and Scanning Electron Microscopic Techniques
    • Destructive and Non-destructive Physical Testing
    • Laboratory Equipment and Procedures
    View Edward George's Consulting Profile.
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    Dr. Paul Eason, PE, CFEI
    4600 Touchton Road,Building 100, Suite 150
    Jacksonville FL 32246
    USA
    phone: 904-279-9300 or 888-504-5454
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    Paul Eason is a Licensed Engineer, Nationally Certified Fire & Explosion Investigator and Forensic Consultant. His expertise comes from a strong background in industry and academia. In addition to his consulting practice, he is a professor in the Mechanical Engineering program at the University of North Florida, and maintains a graduate faculty appointment in the Materials Science and Engineering Program at the University of Florida.

    Dr. Eason has testified in numerous trials and depositions in the following practice areas: Product Design & Manufacturing Analysis, Metallurgy & Materials, Fire & Explosions and Industrial Accidents

    Areas of Expertise:

    Product liability and failure analysis, Product Defect & Safety Issues including: Metals, Plastics, Glass, Ceramics, Corrosion, Fatigue, Overload & Material Selection

    Fire and Explosion analysis including: cause and origin determination, product related fire causation, industrial process accidents, dust explosions, welding/brazing accidents
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    Dr. Arun Kumar
    Ph.D.
    250 N. Nash Street
    El Segundo CA 90245
    USA
    phone: 310-322-2011
    fax: 310-322-2243
    Arun Kumar, Ph.D. has 34 years of experience in Metallurgy, Materials Science and Failure Analysis of Metallic and Non-Metallic Materials at Rockwell International, Hughes Aircraft Company and EAG Laboratories. He manages and supervises approximately 17 engineers and technicians performing a variety of analytical services and failure analysis.

    Dr. Kumar provides metallurgical consultation, performs failure analysis and serves as an expert witness in product liability trials involving materials failures. He has extensive experience in metallurgical failure analysis of aircraft, helicopter, automobile and motorcycle components, machineries, medical implants, machine tools and household appliances.
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    Heather Suttle
    Marketing Manager
    411 N. Sam Houston Parkway East
    Suite 350
    Houston Texas 77060
    USA
    phone: 2813584441
    fax: 281-358-2517
    EFI-Logo.gif
    EFI Global is a full-service Engineering, Fire Investigation, Environmental, Health and Safety, and specialty consulting firm. Over the last four decades, they have grown from a boutique firm to become a recognized leader in engineering failure analysis, origin and cause investigations, and environmental consulting. This expertise coupled with the extensive coverage of our 27 national offices, more than 400 professionals, and global work abroad capability allows EFI Global to deliver timely responses that consistently meets their clients’ expectations.

    EFI Global's continuing record of success has earned them several rankings in national publications including Engineering-News Record, Business Insurance, and Zweig White. EFI Global employs professional engineers licensed in nearly all 50 states, as well as licensed fire investigators and environmental professionals. Their team of licensed professionals and numerous strategic partnerships can respond to most projects within 48 hours, regardless of location.

    When faced with litigation, EFI Global's clients rely on valid, factual conclusions that translate scientific and technical facts into understandable concepts that can be supported with expert witness testimony. From thousands of fire cause and origin investigation for cases in federal, district and state courts, EFI has expanded its testimony expertise to assist the legal community with disputes arising from forensic engineering, accident reconstruction, environmental consulting, asbestos-related cases, mold and indoor air quality (IAQ) litigation support, and catastrophe claims.

    Expert Witness Services:
    • Insurance Litigation
    • Environmental Litigation
    • Product Liability
    • Transportation & Accident Reconstruction
    • Construction Defects
    • Failure Analysis
    • Professional Liability
    • Contract Law
    • Catastrophic & Disaster Litigation
    • Real Estate
    View EFI Global's Consulting Profile.
    This passage from the Book of Leviticus, which reads like an awkward directive from a manual on mold remediation, is an indication that mold has been troubling mankind since Biblical times. Although mold has been an issue for centuries, only in recent years has it grabbed the spotlight. This is due to high-profile lawsuits, such as the Ballard case in Texas, in which a family claimed that mold in their home was the source of their myriad health problems. The Ballards won an initial $32 million judgment against their insurance company, which later was reduced to $4 million.

    11/2/2017 · Construction
    Engineering involvement with property losses demands an open technical mind that can look at the bigger picture, sometimes beyond the scope of work initially requested by the adjuster or insurance company. Engineering law requires the professional engineer to protect "public health, safety, and welfare. "Sometimes specific technical requests are made to a forensic engineering firm that lead to much broader technical involvement in order to ensure compliance with engineering law and the protection of the public. Is it a benefit for an engineer to look at a broader picture when investigating a loss event, even if the scope of work has been specified? Let's examine two examples.

    8/28/2017 · Failure Analysis
    A tornado can cause catastrophic and extensive damage to all types of structures. For some, the damage requires a total rebuild. However, for the homes and buildings that are salvaged after a tornado, a detailed assessment by a qualified structural engineer is needed to determine the extent of structural damage, the repairability of the structure, and to assist with other repair recommendations related to the building envelope and required building code upgrades.

    7/17/2017 · Environment
    The tiny pinhole in the pipe elbow probably took more than twenty years to form and cause a leak, a day or two to be discovered, and less than an hour to be repaired. This recent claim involving corrosion of a pipe elbow on a home heating oil tank resulted in a very minor release of a few gallons of heating oil to the surrounding surface soil. The insured acted appropriately, the release was quickly investigated and repaired. Based on the size of the tank and volume of the release, state regulations did not apply; however, local regulators became concerned over the possibility of impact to shallow groundwater in the area. Although the shallow aquifer was not considered a source of drinking water, it was used extensively for irrigation. Furthermore, the property owner soon began to notice petroleum like odors inside the home/office necessitating relocation for a couple of days. After the repair of the leak, the situation was completely resolved in a few weeks with the excavation and removal of impacted soil from beneath a patio and a portion of the building adjoining the point of release. Fortunately, the release was discovered early, quickly repaired, and the volume of the spill was not sufficient to impact groundwater, which could have easily transported contaminants and associated vapors well beyond the boundaries of the insured's property.

    5/31/2016 · Damages
    Both large-scale catastrophe-induced losses and small-scale single event losses have the potential to impact employees, individuals, insurance personnel, general contracting restoration firms and associated property loss. In addition to the actual water-loss event, secondary losses can become equally as devastating depending on pre-existing and/or event-related building conditions, and the role the insured's take as part of required catastrophe restoration activities. During the water loss event, all project related information and environmental data generated is an integral part of the decision making process that may be disclosed at various stages to inform all the various "parties" involved with the project. All in all, a well-executed restoration project can minimize common delays and expenses of an ill-conceived and managed project.

    Sectors of the construction industry are reporting resurgence and growth in 2013. Single and multi-family housing, commercial, institutional and public works construction is predicted to increase up to 28% in some areas. This is good news for the industry and the economy but the increase in construction activity has historically led to an increase in construction accidents.

    In the course of an arson investigation one of the standard procedures is, when possible, to collect the clothing of arson suspects and have them tested for ignitable liquids. The hypothesis being that if the clothing tests positive for the same ignitable liquids that are found in the fire debris, it is good circumstantial evidence to place the suspect at the scene with an ignitable liquid.

    A growing concern in the insurance sector is soot and smoke damage claims due to wildfires. Some of these fires can affect properties hund reds of miles downwind, causing the potential number of claims to be astronomical. Besides the known risks for respiratory and other health problems, smoke, soot, and char can cause physical damage ranging from settled ash to property damage.

    3/24/2015 · OSHA
    Every year, approximately 3,600 workers are permanently disabled, and on average, one worker per day is killed, as a result of electrical incidents in the workplace.* To prevent these types of electrical injuries and deaths, building owners and managers should apply the safeguards included in NFPA 70E, the standard utilized by the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) for building electrical assessments. OSHA utilizes the National Fire Protection Association's (NFPA) 70E Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace to provide improved safety procedures for workers through proper warning labels, restricted access notification, personnel training and personal protective equipment (PPE). OSHA compliance will minimize workplace injuries, accidents, illnesses, equipment damage, production losses, and legal costs, which are all avoidable and unnecessary factors in any business.

    10/29/2014 · Fires & Explosions
    The world of fire investigations is always changing and EFI Global is active in its research and testing methods. In an effort to support insura nce, subrogation, loss prevention and litigation relating to losses, EFI Global's chemical laboratories regularly perform chemical analysis on new products to identify potential accelerants and igni tion sources.. Recently, EFI Global laboratories conducted proactive chemical testing on a new matchless fire starter. This commercially available product is marketed and used to start wood and campfires.. The results of EFI Global's testing revealed the limitations and significance if this product is used as an accelerant.

    9/17/2014 · Environment
    Financial institutions require the completion of environmental due diligence of a commercial real estate collateralized lending transaction for many reasons. They may wish to understand the environmental condition of the proposed collateral and ensure a Borrower's compliance with applicable regulations prior to making a loan; to reevaluate the collateral during a renewal or refinance transaction; to determine the collateral's condition at the time of a loan default; or to obtain information about an unexpected environmental condition encountered within the loan term.

    Fire origin and cause investigation, and mold and asbestos testing of a six-story office building

    EFI Global (EFI) was hired by a legal team representing a tire product manufacturer to replicate the use of a tire inflation product in an off-road tire. Litigation was prompted when the tire inflation product was used in an off-road tire that exploded and resulted in a fatality. Our team was asked to evaluate the product when used when used in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions as written on the products label; when used in concert with pure oxygen, and when used in concert with compressed air.

    2/27/2014 · Damages
    Historically, fires and automobile accidents have been the primary types of property and casualty claims that presented a potential avenues of for subrogation. However, with the increased costs of mitigating the extent of water damage and reducing the potential for mold growth, claims involving large water losses have become another important area with subrogation potential.

    Mechanical ventilation systems have evolved from passive gravity vents (circa 1900) by adding modifications to improve comfort, occupant health, and energy efficiency. Early on, the maintenance of the system basically related to making sure the furnace was on and the windows would open. If you were lucky the school might have draft deflectors on the windows so the wind would not blow directly on your head.

    11/13/2013 · Damages
    Following a hurricane, damages to a residential structure can range from structural distress, to small areas of mold growth to a total loss of the structure. Storm damage can affect multiple components of a structure including the roof, windows, siding, foundation and interior finishes. Wind or water is often the most common cause of damage to residential properties; however, there are many factors to consider when assessing the various causes of damage. Some of the factors include material use, age, condition and construction methods as well as type, location and extent of the damage. It is essential that a professional with hurricane damage assessment experience evaluate these factors to accurately define the cause.

    One sunny spring morning, on a rural road just outside of Houston, Texas, Molly Jackson, a vibrant 16-year-old girl with a bright future and a new driver's license, was behind the wheel of her father's brand new Chevrolet C2500 crew cab pickup truck. At the same time, just seven seconds before she would draw her last breath, Rhonda Simmons, a 46-year old divorced mother of two teenagers, was approaching from the opposite direction in her sleek and sporty Pontiac Trans Am.

    Editor's note: A trend to require more fire safety equipment in residences and nursing homes will reduce deaths and injuries, both among firefighters and the general public, says E. Metts Hardy, vice president/Fire Investigations for EFI Global (www.efiglobal.com), a Kingwood, Texas-based provider of engineering, fire investigation, environmental, accident reconstruction, and laboratory testing services.

    8/21/2013 · Insurance
    Nationwide, water-loss claims continue to climb. In California alone, such claims have risen dramatically, with the percentage of homeowner claims growing from 24 percent in 1997 to 32 percent in 2001, costing insurers $1.7 billion. In a single year in California, between 2000 and 2001, claims rose $47 million. For some insurers, this meant that 40 percent of claim payments were for water losses.

    8/7/2013 · Insurance
    Water damage is costly to both homeowners and insurance companies. It is estimated that the cost of household water damage in California, alone, exceeded $500 million for 2002. While the number of water-related claims varies year to year, the average amount paid for such claims increased steadily from $2,577 in 1988 to $3,646 in 2002.

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    Lester B. Engel Jr., PE, CEO
    James A. Brusso, PhD, PE
    925 Industrial Drive South
    Sauk Rapids MN 56379
    USA
    phone: 1-800-258-7968 -or- 320-253-7968
    fax: 320-253-7917
    Engal-Metallurgical-Logo.jpg
    Engel Metallurgical LTD engineers and metallurgists offer laboratory testing services to determine Material Performance and Material Performance Expectation. All tests are performed according to government and/or applicable industrial standards, including ASTM, military, and other specifications.

    Engel Metallurgical clients include attorneys, insurance company representatives and members of a broad range of industries, including chemical, agricultural, aviation, power generation, construction, transportation and manufacturing.

    Litigation Support - Attorneys requiring reliable information rely on Engel Metallurgical. Les Engel and his team of specialists sort through intricate details of structural and material failures, accidents, manufacturing defects and other unexpected incidents that lead to lawsuits, with involvement from initial discovery through court appearances, if necessary.

    In 2003, Engel Metallurgical earned ISO/IEC 17025 accreditation from the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA). This accreditation officially recognizes Engel Metallurgical proficiency in quality and details, and helps ensure that its findings will carry more weight in clients’ litigation cases.

    Engel Metallurgical Ltd. is listed with the Minnesota Association For Justice (formerly Minnesota Trial Lawyers Association) as an expert in the field of metallurgy. Their engineers have extensive experience with deposition and trial. Their high ethical and scientific standards complement our expertise in providing sound, unbiased opinions on technical issues, including:

    Inspection: Equipment and Components Inspected on Site

    Failure Analysis:
    • Root Cause
    • Failure Mode
  • Photographic Documentation
  • Fracture Evaluations
  • Product Evaluation:
    • Quality Control Efforts
    • Reverse Engineering
    • Materials Certification
    • Product Claims, Product Recalls
    • Corrosion Resistance Coatings Selection
  • Product Replacement
  • Non-destructive Testing Procedures
  • Literature Searches
  • US / Foreign Specifications Equivalents
  • Material Property Design Limits
  • Lester Engel Metallurgical Engineering Expert PhotoPrincipal, Lester P. Engel, Jr., PE,, is a Metallurgical Engineer with over 40 years of experience leading the company's detailed, quality-focused testing and services. He oversees the company's lab, continually adding new equipment and techniques.

    Mr. Engel also has experience as the chief metallurgist for Brown Boveri Turbomachinery and as a metallurgical engineer for the Aircraft Engine Group of General Electric, where he focused on material selections for hot aircraft and marine gas turbine components. His GE career began in Nuclear Systems Programs, where his work included serving as the principal investigator on three NASA programs.

    Les Engel specializes in materials application, failure analysis, R & D program management, materials and process specifications, engineering standards and procedures, laboratory design and operation, data analysis and personnel, and budget management. He continues to personally perform failure analysis on aircraft and land turbines, generators, boilers, steel products, metals, cermets, plastics, and other materials.

    With high ethical and scientific standards, Les Engel offers sound, unbiased expert analysis and testimony on technical issues. He provides expertise to insurance companies and counsel representing both plaintiff and defendant.

    Jim Brusso Failure Analysis Expert PhotoJames A. Brusso, PhD, PE, has more than 20 years of experience in processing/properties of materials, materials characterization and behavior, materials specifications, mechanical testing, failure analysis, machining of materials, and laboratory design and operation. He is also Engel Metallurgical's Technical Manager and Quality Manager.

    Dr. Brusso brings keen expertise to Engel Metallurgical and its clients, performing failure analysis; rendering expert opinions, giving depositions and testimony for litigation support; providing technical support for materials and process development and improvement; and developing and reviewing various product designs, materials, and process details.

    Dr. Brusso has worked with Engel Metallurgical since 2000. Prior to that, he held several positions with The Timken Company in Ohio, where his responsibilities included establishing the company’s machinability testing laboratory, team leader for product development projects, managing the company's application metallurgical laboratory, and providing technical review of internal processing and testing standards to satisfy ISO 9000 / QS 9000 registration.

    View Engel Metallurgical's Consulting Profile.
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    Emile Layer
    Principal
    14 Rue Carnot
    Sens 89100
    FRA
    phone: 0033-0386646037
    fax: 0033-0386646037
    Emile-Layer-logo.gif
    ESWL© Consulting Expertise Services is an Consulting Company specializing in the area of Welding & Weld Overlay Cladding Technology, Metallurgy & Corrosion, Design of Weldments and Computational Welding Mechanics (CWM).

    ESWL© has over 30 years of International Expertise in Worldwide projects including Marine Loading Systems for liquefied natural gas (LNG )and others liquid products (Oil, LPG, Suffer liquid … etc.), with Ambient, high or cryogenic temperature Service and Weld Overlay Cladding for the corrosive service of the Wellhead Equipments.

    Emile Layer is a Welding Engineering & Weld Overlay Cladding Expert and a Member of the FMC Technologies Inc. International Trim© Clad Expert Committee.

    Services Include:
  • Materials Selection and Evaluation
  • Welding & Weld Overlay Cladding
  • Quality and Audit
  • Welded Joints Design
  • Development of Welding Procedure Specification (WPS & PQR)
  • Corrosion & Prevention
  • Inspection:
  • Third-Party Witness Inspection
  • Welders Performance Qualifications (WPQ)& Welding Procedure Specification (WPS & PQR
  • Compliance with Relevant Codes Specifications
  • Review of Subcontractor’s (WPQ /WPS /PQR)
  • Witness Tests for Third-Party Inspections Companies
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    David W. Riley
    President, PhD and Physical Organic Chemistry
    858 Princeton Ct.
    Branchburg NJ 08853
    USA
    phone: 908-369-7260
    fax: 908-369-7260
    Dr. David W. Riley is an Extrusion Analysis & Plastics Rheological Consultant. Dr. Riley has spent over nineteen years as a consultant in the field of Plastic Processing. He has over forty years of experience in developing Polymer Defect Technology and fifteen years in developing the field of Plastic and Polymer coefficient of friction related to the feed section of the extruder.

    Areas of Expertise:
    • Expert Witness
    • Analytical Instrumentation Adaptation to Processing Equipment
    • Friction Analysis
    • Melt Rheology
    • Extrusion Equipment: Design & Analysis of Production
    • Telecommunication Cables and Insulation
    • Power Cables and Testing XLDPE
    • All phases of PVC Compounding & Extrusion
    • Thermal Stability of Polymers
    • Surface Chemistry, Metals & Polymers
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    Jon M. Crate, President & Chief Executive Officer
    825 Chance Road
    Marietta GA 30066
    USA
    phone: 770-928-1930
    fax: 770-928-9202
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    FAI Materials Testing Laboratory, Inc. (FAI) is a full service Analytical, Failure Analysis, and Materials Testing laboratory. They are professional scientists, chemists, and engineers with decades of experience solving problems in a host of industries. Founded in 1999, they have served hundreds of companies across the world.

    Litigation Support - FAI leverages their considerable experience in litigation and extensive laboratory resources to support their expert testimony. Their goal is to effectively support their clients in challenging cases. FAI has one of the finest laboratory environments for conducting joint inspections in the nation including photographic, videographic, and microscopic documentation capabilities.

    Areas of Expertise:
    • Analytical Chemistry
    • Cleanliness Testing
    • Composite / Window Lamination Issues
    • Corrosion
    • Electrical and Electronic Failure
    • Failure of Composites

  • Failure of Pressure Vessels
  • Fatigue Failure
  • Foreign Substance Identification
  • Fractography
  • Materials Compatibility
  • Materials Science
  • Optical and Electron Microscopy
  • Particle Characterization

  • Pharmaceutical Analysis
  • Protein Characterization
  • Polymer Chemistry
  • Support for Patent and Product Litigation
  • Textiles
  • Tire Failure
  • Weld Quality

  • Jon Crate Materials Failure Analysis Expert PhotoJon M. Crate is the founding President and CTO of FAI Materials Testing Laboratory. He received his bachelor's degree in Chemistry from University of Central Florida, his Master's in Polymers from the MSE Department of Georgia Tech and three years of postgraduate education in Molecular Cell Biology and Biochemistry at the University of Alabama in Birmingham.

    Mr. Crate is a Analytical Chemistry and Materials Failure Analysis expert witness who has leveraged leveraged his expertise to determine and prove the true causes of failure of many different products enabling many cases to settle out of court. He has testified by deposition in over 50 cases, before juries more than 10 times, and proven failure cause many more times where litigation was not needed.

    Mr. Crate is experienced and well versed in the chemical analysis and physical characterization of Natural and Synthetic Polymers, Metals, Inorganic and Organic Compounds, and Composite Materials. He has performed failure analysis on a wide variety of products and components including underground gas and water pipe, commercial aircraft tires, large equipment, rig, light truck, automotive and motorcycle tires, swimming pools and pool coatings, tank coatings, assault resistant commercial window laminates, numerous aircraft components, sailing vessel components, weapon system components, power generation equipment components, and medical devices including artificial heart valve.

    Jon M. Crate is capable of designing and validating test and inspection protocols that will enable the determination of the causes of failure for a wide variety of products and components.

    View FAI's Consulting Profile.
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    Dr. A.B. Thakker
    Ph.D., PE, FASM, CMFGE
    2839 Paces Ferry Road
    Overlook II, Suite 1160
    Atlanta GA 30339
    USA
    phone: 800-215-4468 or 404-771-2600
    fax: 770-234-4148
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    Firm Profile: Established in 1996, Global Technology Experts, Inc. (GTE) specializes in providing multi-disciplinary engineering and scientific consulting, product testing, safety and forensic engineering services to manufacturers, defense and plaintiff attorneys, and to the insurance claims industry. Our professional staff includes engineers, scientists, and technical specialists who have years of experience and excel as experts in wide range of disciplines. GTE has investigated more then 350+ failure cases that include: Machinery/Equipment, Slip and Fall, Accident Reconstruction, Vehicle Rollover, Lift trucks, Bicycle, Generator/Battery, Tree stand, Construction Defects, Pump/Boiler/Chiller, Engine/Transmission, Weld joints, Corrosion, Fatigue, Polymers, Ceramics and Composite materials. GTE also specializes in Life assessment and durability analysis of prototype components etc.

    Areas of Expertise:
  • Electrical Failures
  • Motor/Generator Failures
  • Battery Failures
  • Accident Reconstruction
  • Tire Defects
  • Machinery & Equipment Failures
  • Construction Equipment Failure
  • Aircraft Engine/Structural Failure
  • Structural Engineering
  • Mechanical Metallurgy/Materials Failure
  • Fatigue & Corrosion
  • Product Failure Analysis
  • Bicycle, Ladder, Slip/trip & fall
  • Building Construction & Defect Analysis

  • Education: We have highly experienced and qualified staff:
  • PhD, Engineering Science & Materials, Virginia Tech
  • PhD, Electrical Engineering, Georgia Tech
  • PhD, Mechanical Engineering, Auburn University
  • BS, Civil and Construction Engineering, Kansas State University
  • BS, Mechanical Engineering, S.U.N.Y., Buffalo, NY
  • MBA, Technology Management, Florida Institute of Technology

    Certifications:
  • PE – Registered Professional Engineers
  • CMfgE – Certified Manufacture Engineer

    Professional Affiliations:
  • Southern Law Association
  • Atlanta Claims Association
  • American Society of Mechanical Engineers
  • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineer
  • American Society of Civil Engineers
  • American Society of Materials
  • American Society of Nondestructive testing
  • American Welding Society
  • American Society of Testing Materials
  • Society of Aerospace, Materials and Process Engineers

    Principals:
  • Dr. Ash Thakker, PhD, PE, FASM,FSME, CMfgE (Structures, Materials, Fatigue, Fracture, Composites, Damage Tolerance)
  • Mr. George Kremer, BSME, AAS (Metallurgy, Corrosion, Coatings and Mechanical Failures)
  • Dr. Nicholas Propes, PhD (Electrical Machinery Failures, Maintenance Systems, Testing and Analysis)
  • Dr. Freeman Rufus, PhD (Battery/Motor/Generator Failure)
  • Dr. Jyoti Ajitsaria, PhD (Mechanical Failures)
  • Mr. Mike Healy, BS (Civil, Construction Engineering, Buildings)
  • Mr. Ralph Cunningham, BS (Physical Testing, Accident Reconstruction)
  • 11/20/2010 · Slip, Trip & Fall
    A "slip and fall" or "trip and fall" is the generic term for an injury which occurs when someone slips, trips or falls as a result of a dangerous or hazardous condition on someone else's property. It includes falls as a result of water, ice or snow, as well as abrupt changes in flooring, poor lighting, or a hidden hazard, such as a gap or hard to see hole in the ground

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    R. Craig Jerner, PhD, PE
    Owner, President
    5514 Harbor Town
    Dallas TX 75287
    USA
    phone: 9729340493
    fax: 469-737-3938
    Craig-Jerner-Metallurgy-expert-photo.jpg
    R. Craig Jerner, PhD, PE is a Metallurgical Engineer with over 45 years of experience. Dr. Jerner specializes in Accident Investigation, Product Liability and Metallurgical Failure Analysis. He has conducted approximately 1,500 accident investigations and has testified as a metallurgical expert in over 275 depositions and more than 75 State and Federal court appearances as a metallurgical consultant, accident investigator, and expert witness.

    Dr. Jerner's extensive client list includes individuals, industrial, corporate and government clients who utilize Dr. Jerner's failure analysis, accident investigations, litigation consultant and metallurgical expert witness for their investigation needs.

    As a metallurgist, Dr. Jerner has also consulted with the United States Coast Guard (USCG), National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the U.S. Department of Labor (OSHA). He has testified, as a metallurgical expert, before several federal agency "Boards of Inquiry." Dr. Jerner's expert testimony from these inquiries has appeared in The Congressional Record.

    Dr. Jerner's philosophy is to investigate, as thoroughly as possible, all evidence in order to develop the most probable accident scenario consistent with available physical evidence and developed data/test results.

    Areas of Expertise:
    • Accident Reconstruction
    • Consumer Product Failure Analysis
    • Corrosion and Materials Failure Analysis
    • Fire and Explosion Investigation
    • Forensic Macro / Micro-photographic Documentation
    • Industrial Equipment Failure Analysis
    • Keyence Digital Microscope
    • Metal Testing
  • Metallurgical Expert Witness Testimony
  • Metallurgical Engineering
  • On Site Accident Investigation
  • Product Liability / Reliability
  • Scanning Electron Microscopy
  • Supervised Witness Testing / Consulting
  • Third Party Review and Mediation
  • Welding and Weldment Failure Analysis
  • View Dr. Jerner's Consulting Profile.
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    T. Rao Tipirneni
    President
    97 Marcus Blvd.
    Hauppauge NY 11788
    USA
    phone: 631-643-6792
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    T. Rao Tipirneni has a M.S. in Metallurgy from Stevens Institute of Technology, with approximately 40 years of experience in Metallurgical Failure Analysis. He has been President of Long Island Testing Laboratories, Inc., specialists in Aerospace Metallurgical Testing, since 1985.

    Litigation Support - Mr. Tipirneni provides expert testimony to counsel representing both plaintiff and defendant. His services include laboratory testing, written reports, depositions, and trial testimony as needed.

    Areas of Expertise:
    • Inconel Turbine Blades
    • Fasteners
    • Automobile Engine Parts
    • Boat & Aircraft Parts
    • Weld Joint Failures
    • Corrosion Pipe Failures
  • Accident Failures
  • Ladders
  • Hammers
  • Hip Implants
  • Rail Road Car Wheels
  • Springs
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    Dr. Richard F. Lynch
    377 Sicomac Avenue
    Wyckoff NJ 07481-2128
    USA
    phone: 201-891-8399
    fax: 201-891-8398
    Dr. Richard F. Lynch has over 35 years of industrial experience in all areas of Metallurgical and Material Forensic Investigations, including 11 years with a major metals producing and processing company. He serves as an Expert Witness / Consultant on Steel, Nonferrous Metals, and Non-Metallic Materials.

    As a U.S. patent holder, Dr. Lynch has authored and/or presented over 60 technical papers on the properties and uses of galvanized steel, cast and wrought non-ferrous and ferrous products, pretreatments for painting metallic surfaces, product development and ASTM standards.

    Dr. Lynch's client base includes attorneys and companies requiring failure analysis, metallurgical testing, or assistance with end product manufacture, metallurgical processing, casting, galvanizing, zinc production, surface treatments, metallurgical process licensing, international metals research and market research.

    Areas of Expertise:
  • Fracture
  • Corrosion Failure
  • Galvanized Steel
  • Ferrous
  • Nonferrous
  • Polymers
  • Composites
  • Paint Failure
  • Standards / Specifications
  • Failure of Structural Materials, Fabricated Products, Fuel Tanks
  • Surface Preparation
  • Metal Pretreatments & Painting of Galvanized Steel
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    Marc H. Richman, ScD, PE
    One Richmond Square, Ste. 105C
    Providence RI 02906
    USA
    phone: 401-751-9656
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    Marc H. Richman, ScD, PE, has been actively engaged in Forensic and Consulting Engineering for over 45 years. He has personally supervised and conducted over 3,000 investigations for individuals, attorneys, insurance carriers, industrial firms, state and federal agencies and commission, and police and fire departments.

    Dr. Richman's educational background at MIT was physical metallurgy and failure analysis. He taught as an instructor at MIT and ran the analytical Metallography laboratory there as well as set up the electron microscopy laboratory at MIT. At Brown, he was director of the Central Electron Microscopy Lab and was very active in Failure Analysis and Fractography as well as Analytical Metallography.

    Dr. Richman has investigated failures of offshore drilling rigs and propeller shaft failures(Bethlehem Steel Shipbuilding), helicopter crashes on the Pan Am building and at Newark Airport (NY Airways and Lloyds of London), construction elevator failures (Gilbane Construction and Aetna), bridge failures (Mystic River Bridge upper deck - MassPort Authority), hydroelectric plant shaft failures (McCallum Enterprises), pressure vessel and machinery failures, military equipment and weapons failures, building failures and collapses (US Navy and others), and steel mill production (Italy).

    Litigation Support - Marc H. Richman has testified for both plaintiff and defense in about 175 trials in civil and criminal courts. He has served as Technical Advisor to the US District Court (RI) on patent cases (Hon. Raymond Pettine) and has been a consultant for the US Naval Applied Science Laboratory, the US Army Materials and Mechanics Research Center, Battelle, Texas Instruments, etc.).

    Dr. Richman has provided expert testimony from product malfunctions, to fatal car accidents, to peeling paint on the Pell Bridge, to the Pan Am Building helicopter crash, to water and gas main failures, to metallurgical examinations of murder weapons.

    Areas of Expertise:
    • Forensic Engineering Investigations
    • Failure Analysis
    • Fire Cause and Origin
    • Product Liability
    • Accident Reconstruction
    • Gas Explosions
  • Structural Failures
  • Metallurgy
  • Orthopedic Device Failure
  • Product Liability
  • Machine Guarding
  • Instructions and Warnings
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