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Industrial Accident Prevention Expert Witnesses

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Jeffery H. Warren, PhD, PE , CSP
Chief Engineer & CEO
Mail: PO Box 1608
Visit: 7805 Saint Andrews Road
Irmo SC 29063
USA
phone: 888- 827-7823 / 803-732-6600
fax: 803-732-7576
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Jeffery H. Warren, PhD, PE, CSP is Chief Engineer and CEO of The Warren Group. A licensed professional engineer in 14 states, he holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of North Carolina as well as a Master of Science and a Doctorate in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University — all with machine design emphasis. 

Background Experience - A former research engineer for DuPont at the Savannah River Laboratory, Dr. Warren designed, patented, and built an incinerator to burn radioactive waste. He also taught mathematics and engineering at the University of South Carolina in Aiken. Later, Dr. Warren was chief machine designer and owner of Warren Engineering Company, Inc., which designed and built special machinery for manufacturing automation. He combined his passion for keeping people safe with his knowledge of mechanical engineering, machine design, risk assessment, and safety to pursue a career in forensic engineering. 

Dr. Warren is a Certified Safety Professional in engineering aspects and a Certified Fire and Explosion Investigator. He has investigated more than 2,000 claims involving property damage and injuries related to machinery, equipment, and products since 1987. Dr. Warren is a court-qualified expert in mechanical engineering, machine design, risk assessment, and safety. He’s also testified in several hundred depositions and more than 75 trials in state and federal court. He has successfully passed Daubert challenges. Dr. Warren was on the committee that authored the ANSI Technical Report, ANSI B11.TR3-2000 entitled, “Risk Assessment and Risk Reduction – A Guide to Estimate, Evaluate and Reduce Risks Associated with Machine Tools.” He regularly investigates personal injury and wrongful death product liability claims as well as property damage claims involving machinery and equipment in both manufacturing and construction workplaces for both the plaintiff and the defense. He has a reputation for thoroughly analyzing each case to provide precise, understandable, fact-based opinions. 

Dr. Warren has a way of making complicated mechanical engineering, machine design, risk assessment and safety concepts understandable to the ordinary person. He also presents classes and seminars on topics ranging from investigation of machinery and equipment, unintentional injury claims, subrogation and SAFETYTHROUGHDESIGN®. 

Areas of Expertise:

  • Machine Design and Safeguarding
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Risk Assessment
  • Safety
Welcome to the third and final post in our multipart series of blog posts about a young boy's fall and serious injury at a public playground. In our first post we gave a brief overview of the incident and our investigation. In the second post we discussed some of the safety standards applicable to public playgrounds. In this post, we will examine some of the impact-absorbing playground surfaces available to protect children at playgrounds from injury. If you would like to read the first two posts, they are available here and here.

Welcome to the second part in our multipart blog series examining a young boy's fall and injury at a public playground. If you missed the first part in this series, click www.warrenforensics.com/2017/10/11/children-will-fall-at-playgrounds-what-shall-we-do-to-protect-them-a-multipart-blog-series-part-i/ to read it. In this post, we will highlight some resources that designers of public playgrounds can use to help ensure their designs are reasonably safe.

In 2011, a 5-year old boy was severely injured at a public playground when he fell through a second floor opening around a fireman's pole in a playhouse. He fell more than seven feet and struck a bare concrete floor. We are thankful that he eventually recovered from his injuries. The person who designed and built the playground was accused of negligence. A lawsuit ensued, and eventually settled in favor of the boy.

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John Phillips, PE, CFEI
Senior Consulting Engineer
Mail: PO Box 1608
Visit: 7805 Saint Andrews Road
Irmo SC 29063
USA
phone: 888- 827-7823 / 803-732-6600
fax: 803-732-7576
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John Phillips, PE, CFEI, Senior Consulting Engineer, has more than 30 years of Crane and Heavy Equipment experience and more than 20 years of experience in forensic engineering. In addition to holding a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of South Carolina, Mr. Phillips is a Licensed Professional Engineer in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Louisiana, Ohio and Minnesota. He is NCEES registered both as a model engineer and with The United States Council for International Engineering Practice. During his career, Mr. Phillips has designed crane systems, supervised installation, tested and certified lifting equipment even serving as a project engineer for maintenance and certification of nuclear weapon lifting and handling systems. His extensive experience helps him determine the cause and scope of damage for crane, hoist, and other lift equipment incidents. In addition, he’s a certified Fire and Explosion Investigator and a certified Fire Investigator Instructor by the National Association of Fire Investigators. 

Mr. Phillips is adept at determining the origin, cause, and scope of damage for equipment and structural fires. He also evaluates consumer and industrial equipment for product defects, guarding, and safety issues. He has testified in depositions and trials in state and federal court. Mr. Phillips is a member of the International Code Council (ICC), American Society of Materials (ASM) and the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM), as well as a voting member of the ASTM Performance of Buildings, Forensic Sciences, Forensic Engineering, and Ships & Marine committees. 

Areas of Expertise:

  • Cranes and Heavy Machinery
  • Hoist and Lifts
  • Crane / Heavy Equipment Failure Analysis
  • Fires and Explosions
  • Industrial Accident Reconstruction
  • Machinery Damage Assessment
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Jennifer Morningstar, BSChE, PE, CFEI
Chemical Engineer
Mail: PO Box 1608
Visit: 7805 Saint Andrews Road
Irmo SC 29063
USA
phone: 888- 827-7823 / 803-732-6600
fax: 803-732-7576
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Jennifer Morningstar, PE, CFEI, is a licensed professional engineer in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Iowa and West Virginia, and an NCEES Model Law Engineer. Ms. Morningstar is a member of the National Association of Fire Investigators (NAFI) and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemical Engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, as well as a Masters of Business Administration from the University of South Carolina. Background Experience - Ms. Morningstar has 19 years of industrial experience. She spent 16 years working at a polyethylene terephthalate (PET) manufacturer gaining familiarity with all the unit operations. Her experience includes distributed control systems (DCS) and programmable logic controllers (PLC). She is an OSHA-trained Process Hazard Analysis study leader and completed Root Cause Failure Analysis training to become an Incident Investigator. Ms. Morningstar authored Lockout / Tagout Procedures and Confined Space Entry Procedures. She also managed capital expansion projects in excess of $1M and then spent 3 years as an energy management consultant in a variety of industries including mineral extraction, pulp & paper, animal harvesting & packaging (including rendering) and grain milling. Ms. Morningstar worked with both natural gas and coal-fired boilers producing saturated steam and super-heated steam for cogeneration. Other processes in her expertise include air compressors, cooling towers, chillers, multi-stage ammonia-based refrigeration systems, waste water treatment and biogas production. Areas of Expertise:

  • Chemical Release and Exposure
  • Environmental Regulatory Compliance
  • OSHA Process Safety Management
  • Industrial Accident Investigation
  • Fires and Explosions
  • Confined Space Entry
  • Lockout / Tagout
  • Scope of Damage / Cost to Repair
10/8/2018 · Chemical Industry
On December 3, 1984, at a pesticide ingredient manufacturing facility owned by Union Carbide, a leak occurred in the Methyl Isocyanate (MIC) plant. Due to the toxic nature of the gases released and the plant's proximity to local residences, the death toll was in the thousands; both plant workers and nearby residents. The first recorded public meeting in response to this incident was on December 9th, in Institute, WV, the site of Union Carbide's only US MIC production unit. Full disclosure: my father was a research & development chemist for Union Carbide and Institute is about 10 miles down the Kanawha River from my hometown of Charleston, WV.

6/27/2018 · Corrosion
When thinking about the safe operation of boilers (and don't we all?), several systems can readily be named; flame control, fuel/air ratio; steam pressure control, levels in the vessel, etc. What about the water? It seems so passive, as long as there is enough for level control, what's the big deal? Well, it turns out, that as the steam produced by a boiler is used in the process, the condensate from that steam is returned to the boiler as feedwater. However, since 100% of the condensate is not returned, whatever solids had been in that water before it evaporated to form steam are left in the remaining water. Fresh feedwater is added to maintain levels, but even fresh water contains some dissolved solids. So over time, the water in the boiler system gets saturated with all sorts of dissolved minerals.

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John Holecek, MSME, PE, CSE, CFEI
Senior Consulting Engineer
Mail: PO Box 1608
Visit: 7805 Saint Andrews Road
Irmo SC 29063
USA
phone: 888- 827-7823 / 803-732-6600
fax: 803-732-7576
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John Holecek, MSME, PE, CSE, CFEI, Senior Consulting Engineer, is a licensed professional engineer in 8 states and has both a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of South Carolina. Mr. Holecek has passed the professional engineering exam in both Mechanical and Controls Engineering. A NAFI Certified Fire and Explosion Investigator, he has more than 22 years of experience in the design of industrial, commercial and consumer products. These products include industrial ovens, paint spray systems, HVAC systems, conveyors, and gas appliances including commercial cooking equipment and gas grills. Mr. Holecek's design experience includes the control systems for these products as well as the normal safeguarding provisions applied to these products. Additionally, he has supervised manufacturing operations and managed outside contractors in site safety requirements and the installation of industrial process equipment. By virtue of his experience, he is well versed in federal and state worker safety regulations. 

Areas of Expertise:

  • Electrical and Mechanical Control Systems
  • Fires and Explosions
  • Gas Fired Equipment and Appliances
  • ICC, NFPA, OSHA Codes and Standards
  • Industrial Processes and Operations
  • Safety Regulations
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Roger Davis, PE, CFEI
Senior Consulting Engineer
Mail: PO Box 1608
Visit: 7805 Saint Andrews Road
Irmo SC 29063
USA
phone: 888- 827-7823 / 803-732-6600
fax: 803-732-7576
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Roger Davis, PE, CFEI, Senior Consulting Engineer, is a Licensed Professional Engineer in South Carolina, North Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi. Mr. Davis holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Master of Business Administration from the University of South Carolina. He also has a certificate in Crane Safety from the Georgia Institute of Technology, Distance Learning and Professional Education Center as well as certificates in Fire and Explosion Investigation and Vehicle Fire Investigation.

Mr. Davis is experienced with municipal water, sanitary sewer, and storm water system design, construction, and operations. His expertise also includes property damage and personal injury investigations involving municipal utilities. Mr. Davis is an accomplished gas and diesel engine mechanic and has more than 30 years of experience with hydraulic plumbing and piping issues. He gained practical experience in hydraulics, fluid flow, tanks, and material handling with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and Laidlaw Environmental Services, Inc., the largest hazardous and industrial waste firm in North America. He also gained experience in industrial operations as a Manufacturing Engineer.

Roger Davis has investigated claims and injuries ranging from pressure piping system failures and material and personnel handling equipment to large engine failures and fires involving machinery, generators and vehicles.

Areas of Expertise:
  • Aerial Lifts
  • Failure Analysis
  • Industrial and Accident Reconstruction
  • Machine Safeguarding
  • Products Liability Vehicle
  • Mechanical Failure
  • Water and Sewer Systems
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    Michael C. Wright, PE, CSP, CPE
    President
    9363 Detrick Jordan Pike
    New Carlisle OH 45344-9140
    USA
    phone: 937-964-1900
    fax: 937-964-8457
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    Michael WrightMichael C. Wright, PE, CSP, CPE is a Professional Engineer with over 35 years of academic, practical, and specialized knowledge of Engineering, Construction, Safety, Maintenance, Demolition and Training in general industry and construction activities. Mr. Wright's expertise is a definite plus in providing clients with leading edge information and insight. A licensed and practicing engineer, he rounds out his knowledge as a Certified Safety Professional (CSP) and Certified Plant Engineer to provide an insightful and accurate understanding of the issues involved in a case.

    Mr. Wright has completed over 600 hours of specialized safety training, serves on ANSI and ASTM Standards committees and provides a thorough knowledge of OSHA Regulations, Directives and Letters of Interpretation. A recognized author, presenter, and trainer, Mr. Wright communicates the issues clearly for all to understand. His expert witness experience is a balanced blend of defense, plaintiff and OSHA Solicitor cases. Mr. Wright is licensed in 46 states.

    Areas of Expertise:
  • Safety Programs
  • Construction
  • Product Liability
  • Fall Protection Programs
  • Suspended Loads
  • Contractors Formwork
  • Leading Edge Work Activities
  • Machine Guarding Safety
  • Concrete, Wood, Steel
  • Ladder Safety
  • Aerial & Scissor Lifts
  • Anchorage Points - Fall Arrest Programs
  • Bleachers
  • Scaffolding
  • Multi-Employer
  • Concrete Formwork
  • Construction & Demolition
  • Roofing
  • Crane Design & Inspection
  • Training Safety Programs (Customized Training Manuals)
  • View Mr. Wright's Curriculum Vitae
    1/27/2011 · Construction
    The traditional methodology for addressing safety for facilities, machines or products is for owners, architects, engineers, consultants, contractors and vendors to complete the design, engineering, construction or fabrication of a project based on past knowledge, experience and training.

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    Chip Darius, OHST, CET, CSHO
    President
    110 Court Street, Suite 1
    Cromwell CT 06416
    USA
    phone: 860-978-9899 or 800-809-0059 (Toll Free)
    fax: 860-760-6264
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    Chip Darius is an OSHA Safety Consultant and Trainer with over 27 years experience in general industry, construction, utilities and emergency services. Mr. Darius is an Instructor for the OSHA Training Institute Region 1 Education Center, teaching courses on OSHA regulations since 2002. Mr. Darius is an experienced Expert Witness with experience in both plaintiff and defense cases, in state and federal matters. He has testimony experience in depositions and at trials. He is available to review and evaluate cases, assist in framing legal arguments, assess the merits of a case, conduct incident investigations, and perform site inspections. Mr. Darius is adjunct faculty for Keene State College and Fitchburg State University, teaching courses on OSHA standards.  View Consulting Profile.

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    Mark E. Briggs, CSP, ARM
    1314 Theodore Drive
    Champaign IL 61821
    USA
    phone: 217-840-0235
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    Mark Briggs Safety Risk Management Expert PhotoMark E. Briggs is a Certified Safety Professional (CSP) with over thirty years of success as a risk management and safety professional. Mr. Briggs has served in the commercial insurance industry, as the Risk Manager and Chief Risk Officer for two Level 1 Research Universities, and is a co-founder of Safety Management Resources Corporation (SMRC). SMRC has provided continuing support to clients in the construction, manufacturing, education, and service industries for over twenty years.

    Mr. Briggs works successfully with organizations to develop and implement comprehensive safety and risk management initiatives designed to ensure conformance with industry best practices, relevant consensus standards, and governmental regulations. These efforts integrate corporate values into the organizational culture at all levels, increasing operational effectiveness, eliminating employee injuries and property losses, and maximizing the protection of corporate assets and the reputation of the enterprise.

    Mr. Briggs serves as an adjunct faculty member in Illinois State University’s safety degree program, while also acting as the chair of the department’s advisory board. He is engaged with numerous national panels, boards, and task forces sponsored by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigations, the Department of Justice, the Department of Education, and others. He has also supported the U.S. Olympic Committee in a variety of functions directly related to safety and risk management.

    Litigation Support - Mark Briggs provides expert witness and litigation support services for both plaintiff and defense matters, drawing on his extensive professional experience, formal education, and continuing studies. He brings to each case his first-hand knowledge of industry customs and practices, a deep understanding of relevant consensus standards, and significant experience in the interpretation and application of government regulations. Mark’s background includes case review, investigation, development of detailed reports, and experience providing testimony in Circuit, State, and Federal Courts throughout the country.

    Areas of Expertise:
  • Risk Assessments and Safety Audits
  • Construction Safety and Regulatory Compliance
  • Industrial Safety and Regulatory Compliance
  • Accident and Incident Investigation
  • Confined Space Entry Operations
  • Fall Protection Systems and Solutions
  • Ladder and Scaffold Safety
  • Cranes, Hoists, and Rigging Safety
  • Excavation and Trenching Operations
  • Machinery and Equipment Safety
  • Occupational Health & Safety / OSHA Compliance
  • Recreational Facilities & Activities Safety
  • Premises Liability
  • K-12 and Higher Education Operations, Management & Facility Safety
  • Slip, Trip & Fall Prevention
  • Enterprise Risk Management
  • Business Continuity and Emergency Management
  • Worker's Compensation Insurance
  • View Mark E. Briggs' Consulting Profile.
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    Greg Gerganoff, CSP, Esq.
    Certified Safety Professional

    Denver, CO
    All States USA
    phone: 303-330-4616
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    Greg Gerganoff OSHA Safety Expert Photo


    Greg Gerganoff, CSP, Esq., possesses extensive experience in the safety compliance and practice involving OSHA and MSHA.  He obtained is law degree from Western Michigan University, Cooley Law School and practiced general civil law forapproximately 12 years in Colorado prior to  entering the safety profession.  He earned a Certified Safety Professional certification and has 18 years field safety experience in mining, oil and gas, construction, manufacturing, power plant outages and light rail construction.


    • An Authorized Outreach Trainer for OSHA General Industry.
    • A PEC Safeland Basic and Core instructor (Oil and gas).
    • An MSHA Approved Instructor (Blue Card) for Surface, Metal/nonmetal.
    • A member of American Society of Safety Professionals.

    His professional safety experience includes OSHA / MSHA Safety field work and compliance with experience in the heavy construction, manufacturing, light rail construction, power plant outages, public schools, oil and gas, mining, pipeline, and trenching and excavation industries.

    Litigation Support: Mr. Gerganoff assists with discovery questions regarding safety matters. Safety opinions based upon statutory, administrative, judicial rulings and related industry association safety policies ancillary to OSHA and MSHA.   Mr. Gerganoff is retained by attorneys for both Plaintiff and Defendant.

    Some of the subject matter litigation he has handled include:

    • Forklift Safety and Operation
    • Lock Out Tag Out/Natural Gas Compressor Stations
    • Oil and Gas Explosion/Fire
    • Mining Stock Pile Management
    • Commercial Property Stairway
    • Compressed Gas Cylinder Safety
    • Crane and Aerial Lift Safety
    • Mining Pre-Shift Inspection, OSHA v MSHA Jurisdiction
    • Traffic Control Plans/MUTCD
    • Working at Heights, Employee Safety Training
    • Stairway/Ladder Safety-Oil and Gas General Industry

    View Greg Gerganoff's Consulting Profile.

    Hazard recognition plays a vital role in keeping employees safe. Some hazards are easily recognized, for example an employee climbing up a 20-ft ladder while holding tools in both hands is an obvious fall hazard. While some safety hazards are immediately recognizable, others require training to spot and avoid. One such hazard is hydrogen sulfide (H2S). Training is a key method to avoid the "ostrich zone." You do not want to bury your head when facing this hazard.

    10/11/2018 · OSHA
    When personal injury events occur legal negligence actions may arise. Common law negligence is established by plaintiff showing defendant owed plaintiff a legal duty, to conform to a standard of care, defendant breached that duty, plaintiff suffered injury and there is a causal relationship between the breach and injury.

    5/16/2018 · Expert Witnessing
    Lawyers and courts turn to expert witnesses to provide triers of fact with explanations of aspects of a case that are not commonly known. It is the subject matter expert's education, experience, and skill in a particular area that will help the triers of fact to reach a well-informed conclusion/decision. Examples of expert witnesses include medical doctors, accountants, engineers, DNA scientists, and more. Lawyers (and the courts) will employ an expert witness to shed more light upon factual issues for the purpose of discerning the truth. In short, expert witnesses educate, clarify, and explain a subject that is not common knowledge for most people.

    10/17/2017 · Expert Witnessing
    The employ of expert witnesses in litigation is typically undertaken to help the decider of fact (judge or jury) decipher an area of specialized knowledge which is key to the case. The expert report serves the primary purpose of "educating" deciders of fact on topics not commonly known to the general public. However, a noncomplying expert report can wreak havoc on a case, increase costs or worse, have the expert's testimony precluded in whole or part from use at trial. This of course is contrary to the purpose of retaining an expert in the first place. Understanding the parameters of compliance (C.R.C.P. 26 (a) (2) (B) (I)) and how sanctions for non-compliance (C.R.C.P. 37 (c) (1)) may be applied is important not only for legal counsel but the expert as well under the 2015 rule updates and the recent Colorado Supreme Court case, Catholic Health Initiatives Colorado v. Earl Swensson Associates, Inc.

    10/26/2016 · Construction
    During a recent conversation with a friend who had purchased a small construction company he mentioned in passing that one of his employees had injured his ankle on the job but didn't report it to his work comp carrier as it was a minor incident, no days off work, didn't want his rates to go up, why bother. All is good. Right?

    8/18/2016 · OSHA
    Electricity is a vital source of energy in our daily lives. It powers tools, provides light and heat. Our working lives are much improved and efficiency greatly increased thanks to electricity. But what about those situations where power from the grid is unavailable. Well, portable generators are an excellent tool for such a scenario.

    6/24/2016 · OSHA
    Safety culture is a term frequently bandied about in today's business world and sounds as trendy as "mission statements" were years ago. (Let's not forget "best in class". First time I heard this at a company meeting I looked around to make sure I hadn't mistakenly wandered into a dog show. Really?)

    Use fall protection; Use trench boxes when excavating; Lock out Tag Out any time repair or maintenance of equipment involving stored energy is performed; Slips, Trips and Falls are one of the most expensive types of injury. For my sixteen years in safety these safety hazards were always in the forefront of safety concerns for businesses and safety professionals. Guess what? Work related road way crashes is the number one serious/fatal injury cause for U.S. workers. OSHA recognizes this. CDC/NIOSH has generated a white paper studying this fact. Who knew? So here is some info on this number one safety hazard in the US work place.

    4/11/2016 · OSHA
    In the safety world hazard recognition plays a vital role in keeping your people safe from unsafe behaviors and/or conditions. Some hazards are easily recognized, for example an employee climbing up a 20 foot ladder with tools held in both hands. (This is a fall hazard by the way.) Common sense right? The safety guy who taught me safety had a great response to this attitude, "Few people have any sense (read knowledge) in common (read shared alike)". So while some safety hazards are immediately recognizable others require training to spot and avoid. Training is a key method in avoiding the "Ostrich Zone". One such hazard is Hydrogen Sulfide. You don't want to bury your head facing this hazard. (Won't do much good anyway, Hydrogen Sulfide is heavier then air!)

    3/7/2016 · OSHA
    "If you don't know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else.", so said Laurence J. Peter, a professor at the University of Southern California whose works touched the business world. (He is well known for the "Peter Principal".) Peter's above quote essentially points out that action lacking a clear objective will likely lead to unwanted or unintended consequences.

    2/19/2016 · OSHA
    Hazard recognition plays a vital role in keeping employees safe. Some hazards are easily recognized, for example an employee climbing up a 20-ft ladder while holding tools in both hands is an obvious fall hazard. While some safety hazards are immediately recognizable, others require training to spot and avoid. One such hazard is hydrogen sulfide (H2S). Training is a key method to avoid the "ostrich zone." You do not want to bury your head when facing this hazard.

    1/29/2016 · OSHA
    When personal injury events occur legal negligence actions may arise. Common law negligence is established by plaintiff showing defendant owed plaintiff a legal duty, to conform to a standard of care, defendant breached that duty, plaintiff suffered injury and there is a causal relationship between the breach and injury. FN 1 But what sources of standard of care proofs are available? How does a litigant go about proving standard of care?

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    Daniel Rapperport
    8 Wallis Court
    Lexington MA 02421
    USA
    phone: 781-862-9001 or 339-222-2822
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    Rapperport Associates, Inc., provides exceptional capability in Failure Analysis, Fire and Explosion Investigation, Accident Reconstruction, Structural Analysis, Mechanical and Electrical Engineering, Metallurgy and Materials Science.

    We have provided superior technical support for litigation since 1974, and possess an extraordinarily talented technical team with impeccable academic and industrial credentials and proven analysis capability. Our team of distinguished scientists and engineers is drawn principally from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) and Stanford University.

    AREAS OF EXPERTISE:

    Failure Analysis
  • Structural Design Analysis
  • Metallurgical Failures
  • Finite Element Stress Analysis
  • Fracture and Fatigue Analysis
  • Scanning Electron Microscopy
  • Corrosion

  • Accident Reconstruction
  • Automobiles / Trucks
  • Biomechanics / Injury Mechanism
  • Off-Road Vehicles
  • Occupant Motion
  • Aircraft
  • Animation

  • Fire & Explosion Analysis
  • Cause and Origin
  • Electrical
  • Gases, Liquids and Dust
  • Industrial Processes
  • ........Safety
  • Machine and Industrial Safety
  • Machine Guarding
  • Construction Failures
  • Slips, Trips, Falls


  • Engineering
  • Mechanical
  • Structural / Civil
  • Metallurgy
  • Materials Science
  • Aeronautics and Astronautics
  • Electrical
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    R. Kevin Smith, P.E.
    President, R. K. Smith Engineering
    1539 Chalone Ct.
    Crown Point IN 46307
    USA
    phone: 219-226-9510 (Office)708-790-1938 (Cell)
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    R. Kevin Smith PE, BSME, MMAE, has been a specialist in Engineering Forensic Safety and Design for 35 years. He has consulted on over a 1,000 matters nationwide.

    Mr. Smith is a registered professional engineer and holds a BSME and MMAE from the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago. He specializes in Material Handling Equipment Safety, including lift trucks, dock safety, truck loading, conveyors, and aerial work platform safety.

    Mr. has been actively involved as a member of the committee that writes the Safety Standard for Low Lift and High Lift Trucks (ASME/ANSI B56.1) for over 30 years. He also serves on the B56.6 committee (rough terrain lift trucks) and the ANSI A92.5 and A92.6 subcommittees (self-propelled elevating work platforms).

    Litigation Support - Mr. Smith formerly worked for Triodyne, Inc. for over 15 years as a forensic engineer/principal engineer. As President of R. K. Smith Engineering Inc., he currently has a laboratory for examination and testing, and owns or has access to varied testing equipment and tools.

    Kevin Smith has testified at depositions and trials on several hundred matters. He has performed hundreds of investigations into product failures involving injury and property damage, and has reconstructed numerous accidents. His expertise is available to counsel representing both Plaintiff and Defendant. Mr. Smith also is on the Adjunct Math faculty at Prairie State College.

    Areas of Expertise:
    • Forklift Trucks
    • Aerial Work Platform Lifts
    • Product Testing
    • Material Handling / Lifting / Rigging Equipment
    • Accident Reconstruction
    • Machine Guarding
    • Safeguarding
    • Warnings
  • Agricultural and Construction Equipment
  • Skid Steer Loaders
  • Stability Testing
  • Loading Dock Safety
  • Consumer Products / Testing
  • OSHA Citations
  • Codes & Standards
  • Standard of Care in Design
  • View R. Kevin Smith's Consulting Profile.
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    John L. Ryan, BSME, PE
    Business Headquarters:
    PO Box 7
    Poncha Springs, CO 8142
    Offices in: CO, MI, AR, USA
    phone: 855-627-6273
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    John L. Ryan, BSME, P.E. is a Mechanical Engineer who provides general Mechanical and Structural Engineering expertise. Mechanical and Safety Engineering (MASE) provides full service analysis and accident reconstruction of products involved in accidents. Mr. Ryan's services have been requested for attorneys and insurance companies needing forensic engineering expert witness testimony to determine whether machinery and products involved in injury cases were adequately designed or whether they have a Design, Manufacturing, or Material Defect. All products are lab-tested on site to determine adherence to industry standards and engineering design protocol. Alternate preventative designs are developed when none exist commercially.

    Mr. Ryan is available for both Plaintiff and Defense, depending on the individual case. His services include producing high quality reports and visual aids in the courtroom such as scale models to help explain accident scenarios and alternate designs to judges and juries.

    Areas of Expertise:
    • Accident Investigation and Reconstruction
    • Machine Guarding Accident Investigation
    • Ladder Failure Investigation
    • Design Defect Analysis
    • Structural Analysis of Buildings
    • Product Liability Investigations
    • Crash Data Retrieval
    • General Engineering Injuries and Issues
    • Industrial safety
    • Engineering Continuing Education
    • Product Certification
    View John Ryan's Consulting Profile.
    Tree stand accidents occur frequently during hunting season, causing a variety of injuries from broken bones to paralysis and death. Tree stand accidents involve a variety of causes, including falls from the tree stand, collapse of the tree stand, fires, self inflicted gunshot wounds, and asphyxiation. A study by the Center for Disease Control examined hunting accidents from 1979-1989. 214 of 594 deer hunting related accidents involved tree stands. 52% of these tree stand accidents were due to falls from the stand, 32% were due to collapse of the tree stands.

    This issue of Forensic Clues is the second installment of an examination of ladder accidents. Last month we explored stepladders, this month we will be discussing extension ladders. Ladder accidents are a very common occurrence. Over half a million people annually seek medical attention due to ladder accidents. Over three hundred people are killed yearly in these often preventable accidents. This is a serious problem.

    Ladder accidents occur frequently, often with very serious consequences. Ladders are tools that people use repeatedly, at home and on the job. The CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) states that there are more than 164,000 emergency room-treated injuries annually due to ladders in the United States.

    7/27/2015 · Engineering
    The nursery rhyme involving Humpty Dumpty is a child's first lesson in safety. What would keep Humpty Dumpty safe as he is sitting on the wall? A warning or a railing?

    6/29/2015 · OSHA
    The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that between 1,600 and 2,000 amputations occur annually due to power press operation. Another 18,000 people receive less serious injuries annually. Injury statistics compiled by OSHA for the years 1975 through 1983 confirm these figures. These numbers are alarming and unnecessarily high. Power presses can be used safely when the presses are properly designed to minimize the hazard that the operator is exposed to.

    5/26/2015 · Machinery
    Every year there are thousands of debilitating injuries and deaths on farms. Many of these are related to power take-off's (PTO's). PTO shafts are used to power various farming implements, from mowers, hay balers, augers, and many other types of farming machinery. The PTO shaft was invented in the 1930's. The PTO shaft is essentially a shaft powered by the tractor engine that rotates at high speeds, providing power for a wide array of implements. While this provides a convenient source of power to drive farm implements, serious accidents can occur due to entanglement in PTO's. PTO's must be properly equipped with guards including master shields which covers the stub shaft and universal joint. These shields prevent inadvertent contact with the rotating machinery. Contact with unshielded rotating PTO parts can instantly pull a person into the PTO, causing catastrophic damage.

    Rock and ice climbing have become increasingly popular in recent years. Climbing is now a popular form of exercise and adventure, and a great way to enjoy the outdoors. Unfortunately the greater numbers involved in the sport has led to greater number of accidents. Climbing gyms have brought climbing to areas without outdoor rock resources. These indoor gyms use artificial holds to simulate rock walls. Indoor climbing gyms typically have climbs ranging from twenty feet to fifty feet, or more. Bouldering areas are shorter in height, with adequate padding to protect climbers from falls without the need for ropes.

    While many accidents involving products are the result of a product defect that leads to injury of the product user, accidents can also be the result of a failure caused by lack of maintenance or inspection. This issue of Clues will examine the theory behind failure to maintain accidents, as well as provide examples of common accidents that are due to a lack of maintenance.

    Material science is a broad field that has applications in numerous fields. In product injury cases, material science can help identify defects, determine causes of accidents, determine failure modes, and identify inconsistent manufacturing processes.

    1/21/2015 · Product Liability
    No one likes to see children get hurt, especially when it could be prevented. Poor design, manufacturing defects, material defects, assembly errors, and the lack of a hazard analysis can result in hazardous products that injure people. Many products are put in stores that may have never been looked at by a design engineer and/or a safety specialist.

    Fishing and boating accidents result in thousands of injuries each year. The U.S. Coast Guard reported 3331 injuries and 709 fatalities due to boating accidents on both recreational and commercial vessels. There are many causes for these accidents, including collisions with objects or other vessels, drowning, electrical and mechanical failures, interaction with unguarded machinery, and others. There are various acts and laws that govern accidents at sea. This issue of Forensic Clues will examine some of the preventable accidents caused by defective machinery and equipment that occur at sea, and a brief overview of the laws and regulations affecting product liability litigation related to maritime accidents.

    Paintball is a fun activity for all ages, and can be a safe sport if proper precautions are made. Serious eye injury can occur if a paintball impacts the eyeball, making goggles and facemask a requisite part of paintball. Accidents happen in backyard paintball games most frequently, but also at commercial paintball operations. This Clues will examine the typical preventable paintball accidents, as well as examine product failures that can lead to accidents while playing paintball.

    Accident reconstruction involves attempting to determine the sequence of events of an accident and is a crucial part of product liability cases. Understanding exactly what occurred in an accident gives an engineer the best chance of preventing the accident from occurring again. Often there is limited information to base conclusions on what really happened in an accident. Understanding what goes into accident reconstruction will help attorneys understand what information is crucial to this process. Witness testimony is unreliable at best but must be analyzed and cross referenced with the other available information.

    Lawnmowers cause over 50,000 emergency-room visits every year, based on NEISS data on consumer product injuries. These injuries are distributed evenly between ride-on and walk-behind style mowers. The necessary cutting action of a mower results in an inherent hazard, until technology is developed that can cut grass but not living tissue. While various safety advances over the years have reduced the amount of injuries, the extremely high number of accidents related to mowers that continue to occur show the need for further enhancement of product safety.

    Machine guarding accidents cause many accidents and fatalities every year, despite the availability of modern safety technology. In the years from 1992-1996, one study from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported annual injuries due to workers being caught in machinery of 34,350. In 2012 contact with an object or equipment had the second highest workplace fatality rate at 712 deaths.

    6/10/2014 · OSHA
    OSHA was created through the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970. OSHA's mission is to ensure worker safety by creating and enforcing safety and health standards. OSHA does many good things to help maintain a safe workplace, but manufacturers often try to hide behind the shield of OSHA, putting blame on an employer for unsafe machinery or working conditions, when often the machinery was never safe to begin with. Some standards promote safety and some standards protect the manufacturer from product liability law suits. Most industrial standards are voluntary, unless they are specifically referenced in a Code of Federal Regulations / OSHA standard. OSHA standards are Federally mandated and are enforced by the Federal government.

    Stored energy is accumulated energy, which can release suddenly, potentially causing serious injury or death. Stored energy has many forms, including pressurized gases and liquids, stored mechanical energy, stored electrical energy, and gravitational potential energy. Stored energy is particularly dangerous because the hazard still exists when the original source of energy is removed. This issue of Clues will explain the various forms of hazardous stored energy, how these energies can cause damage or injuries, and how to prevent stored energy accidents.

    Table saw accidents occur frequently, often resulting in serious accidents when the operator comes in contact with the saw blade. The difficulties in guarding table saw blades with conventional guarding techniques often leads to ineffective guards that are removed by saw operators due to their lack of function and flexibility.

    2/26/2014 · Failure Analysis
    A significant number of elderly persons experience falls every year. In 2010, 2.3 million nonfatal fall injuries involving elderly people were treated in emergency rooms around the country. In the same year, 21,700 elderly people died as the result of unintentional falls. Falls for elderly people are extremely hazardous as they may not recover from fractures and other injuries.

    1/22/2014 · Product Liability
    Product Liability Reform has affected many attorneys, consumers, and experts negatively while failing in its goal of greater American competitiveness. This issue of Forensic Clues is dedicated to addressing the problems of tort reform, how this affects you, and what you as an attorney can do to reduce your costs and increase your chances of a successful product liability case, assuming that the case involves a legitimate product defect.

    A recent failure of a ski lift in Wisconsin has received much media attention. While accidents such as these are rare, they do occur. Much more frequent are accidents involving collisions with other people or objects. This issue of Forensic Clues will examine the types of accidents that occur on the mountains.

    11/11/2013 · Failure Analysis
    Powered winches are in use in a variety of applications, some of the most common include vehicle-mounted electric winches, marine vessel winches, marine recovery winches, industrial winches and chain hoists. Accidents occur in all types of winch uses.

    Between 1982 and 1996, 2,795 people died riding all-terrain vehicles, ATV's. This was found in a study by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Over thirty percent of the riders killed were under the age of sixteen.

    9/26/2013 · Failure Analysis
    In 2007, an estimated 15,147 lives were saved from seat belt use. Seat belts save five times more lives than airbags, according to statistics released by NHTSA. Seat belt use has increased over the years, due to cultural trends, and possibly due to the enactment of seat belt use laws. Seat belt systems do not always function as predicted. Seat belt systems can fail during a collision, often resulting in serious injury or death to the vehicle occupant.

    Farming is a dangerous occupation. Tractor rollover accidents have been killing people since the 1920's. In 1990, the National Safety Council estimated 460 people were killed while operating tractors. Tractor rollover caused 239 of these fatalities. Another estimate suggests a more conservative number of annual fatalities - 132, that are the result of tractor rollover accidents. In a four-year period in Pennsylvania alone, 72 people died as a result of tractor rollover accidents.

    Automobile collisions result in damage to property and injuries to people. Compensation is sought through insurance claims, law suits, and product liability claims. Knowing when injuries are more or less severe than is warranted by the damage level involved in the collision is important information. This can help people involved on both sides of litigation or settlements.

    7/23/2013 · Warnings & Labels
    Warning labels are an indelible part of our society. Warning labels are everywhere - on our food, on our drinks, on our sweeteners, on our cars, on our tools, on our cigarettes. As consumers we are constantly barraged with multitudes of warnings, cautions, don't do this's, don't do that's.

    Safety Engineering Resources has had the opportunity to learn a great deal about using fiberglass in structural applications, which are simply applications that must support some sort of load. Using fiberglass as a structural material was brought about by the advances made by organic chemists in recent decades in the field of plastics.

    The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) estimates that approximately 95,000 injuries occur each year due to forklifts.

    5/14/2013 · Failure Analysis
    Two and a half million rear-end collisions occur every year. Rear-end collisions are usually caused by driver inattentiveness.

    Structural failures of buildings range from catastrophic building failures involving mass loss of life and/or property to structural problems such as sagging floors or ceilings, leaning walls, cracking or sinking foundations.

    Golf cart accident frequency has increased dramatically over the last 20 years. A study by Watson, Mehan, Smith, and McKenzie (Golf Cart-Related Injuries in the U.S., American Journal of Preventative Medicine, 2008) of NEISS data found 147,696 people were treated in emergency rooms for golf cart accidents between 1990 and 2006.

    12/27/2012 · Engineering
    Knowing when a personal injury case is due to the action or inaction of another party, or when responsibility falls fully on the injured party, can be a difficult distinction to make. At Mechanical and Safety Engineering, we have been investigating personal injury cases for decades.

    Check for SynapsUs
    Robert A. McNeese
    Conveyor Consultant
    ALL STATES USA
    phone: 228-623-5131
    Bob-Mcneese-Conveyor-Expert-Photo.jpg
    Robert A. (Bob) McNeese is a Professional Conveyor S.M.E. Subject Matter Expert with close to 40 years of conveyor system experience in most every aspect of conveying systems. Mr. McNeese offers his services to the conveying industry to enhance operations, maintenance, and overall safety performance as well as providing 3rd party factually based non- partial overviews and opinions to legal counsel as an expert witness for the purpose of fair litigation.

    Consulting - Bob McNeese has worked to improve efficiency and safety with companies such as Chevron, Southern Company, International paper, DuPont, and various shipping bulk terminals. He offers his unique services to alert customers to the ever changing OSHA, MSHA, ASME, regulations surrounding industrial conveying equipment. Several delivery methods are available to insure the new information and changes are introduced to the jobsite at the core of the workforce (site safety audits, safety topics, banners, labels, safety seminars)

    Litigation Support - Mr. McNeese is an expert in all industrial areas of Conveyors and Bulk Handling Systems. He provides expert witness services to attorneys representing both plaintiff and defendant. Mr. McNeese provides expertise on issues concerning industrial conveyor system accidents and safety concerns as a result of manufacturing, installation, operation, or maintenance.

    Specific Areas of Expertise:
    • Refineries
    • Port Facilities
    • Storage Transfer Facilities
    • Power Plants
    • Mines
    • Chemical Plants
    • Grain Elevators
    • Fertilizer Plants
    • Paper Mills
    • Food Processing
    • Coal Handling
    • Cement
    • Pet Coke
  • Wood Chips
  • Iron Ore
  • Lignite
  • Steel
  • Aluminum
  • Salt
  • Plastics
  • Grain
  • Fertilizer
  • Aggregate
  • Tire Shredding
  • Waste
  • Various Dry Chemicals
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    James M. Miller, PE, PhD
    Founder
    2392 Fuller Court
    Ann Arbor MI 48105
    USA
    phone: 734-662-6822
    fax: 734-747-9712
    Miller-Engineering-Logo.jpg
    The experts at Miller Engineering are Ann Arbor based professional engineers celebrating 35 years of service to University, Government, Insurance, and Industry through research, publications, presentations, and testimony. Miller Engineering has a staff of engineers and experts in the Mechanical, Chemical, Agriculture, Industrial, and Human Factors fields of engineering with specific knowledge in the following areas:

    Vehicles
    • Car/Truck Accident Reconstruction
    • Crash Data Retrieval (CDR)
    • Visibility & Reaction Time Analysis
    • Tires, Trailers, Brakes & Accelerators
    • Truck/Off Road Vehicle Egress/Ingress
    • Traffic Signing and Construction Zones
    Mechanical & Electrical Safety
    • Product Safety & Analysis
    • Machinery - Metal, Wood, Plastic Molding
    • Machine Guarding & Safety, Robots, Automation
    • Hazard and Risk Analysis
    • Employee Safety Procedures – OSHA
    • Electrical Distribution & Transmission Hazards
    Warnings & Instructions
    • Warning Labels & User Manual Design
    • Hazard Analysis & Product Label Designs
    • Medical Device & Drug Warnings & Instructions
    • Inadequate Warnings Analysis
    • Standard Compliance (ANSI Z535)
    • Product Recall Information & Strategies
    Chemicals Safety & Labeling
    • NEW OSHA HAZCOM (2012) & GHS Review
    • MSDS, SDS and Product Label Compliance
    • Toxic Torts - Diacetyl, Asbestos, Benzene, Lead, Carbon Monoxide
    Chemical Exposures & Workplace Safety
    • Chemical Inhalation, Ingestion, Dermal Contact
    • Contamination - Water & Environmental
    • Manufacturing & Process Line Accidents
    • Slips, Trips, Falls, & Entanglements
    Fires & Explosions
    • Cause & Origin Investigations
    • Gas, Vapor, & Electrical
    Agriculture
    • Tractor & Equipment Accidents
    • Chemical Applications & Exposures
    • Crop Storage & Harvesting Accidents
    • Pesticides
    Construction
    • Vehicle Visibility Accidents
    • Slip, Trip, & Fall Accidents
    • Power Tool Repetitive & Immediate Injuries
    • Scaffolding - Cranes - Hoisting - Fork Lifts
    Consumers/Household Safety
    • Appliances & Tools
    • Child Furniture, Choking, Playgrounds
    • Swimming Pools & Exercise Equipment
    • Recreation - ATV, Boats, Bicycles, Boards
    • Ladder, Stair, Step and Railing Accidents
    • Slip, Trip, & Fall Accidents
    Insurance Subrogation & Forensics
    • Accident Investigations
    • Electrical & Fire Causation
    • Chemical Leakage Damage
    • Defective Equipment Injuries
    • Premise and Process Damages
    James Miller Mechanical Engineering Expert PhotoJames M. Miller, PE, PhD – Founder

    Dr. Miller is an Emeritus Professor at the University of Michigan College of Engineering and a registered professional engineer and consultant with over 35 years of experience as an expert witness. He specializes in warnings, labeling and instruction manuals, consumer product design, machine guarding, process safety, fire science, vehicle visibility, tractor egress/ingress, pedestrian and worker slip and fall prevention, recreational vehicles (ATVs, boats, and personal watercraft), compliance with occupational safety and consumer safety standards (OSHA, MSDS, CPSC, ANSI, ASTM, UL, etc.).


    Mark Lehto Engineering Expert PhotoMark R. Lehto, PhD – Co-Founder

    Dr. Lehto is a Professor of Engineering at Purdue University. He specializes in knowledge engineering, warnings and instructions, structuring expert systems, accident modeling, accident statistical analysis, consumer product safety, boating safety, in-field national surveys of product usage and product information effectiveness.






    Bradley Cook Mechanical Engineering Expert PhotoBradley T. Cook, PE – Managing Engineer

    Bradley is a registered professional engineer and consultant with extensive experience in accident reconstruction. He specializes in vehicular accident reconstruction and has investigated hundreds of vehicle accidents involving cars, trucks, pedestrians, bicyclists, motorcycles, etc. Bradley also has experience in product safety and hazard analysis; occupational safety and health (OSHA) compliance; pedestrian and worker slip and fall prevention; investigation and reconstruction of industrial and consumer product accidents. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan and a Masters of Science in Engineering with a Biomedical concentration from Purdue University.
    Mark R. Lehto & Steven J. Landry
    Introduction to Human Factors and Ergonomics for Engineers, Second Edition presents and integrates important methods and tools used in the fields of Industrial Engineering, Human Factors and Ergonomics to design and improve jobs, tasks and products. It presents these topics with a practical, applied orientation suitable for engineering undergraduate students.
    Mark R. Lehto, Steven J. Landry & Jim Buck
    Emphasizing customer oriented design and operation, Introduction to Human Factors and Ergonomics for Engineers explores the behavioral, physical, and mathematical foundations of the discipline and how to apply them to improve the human, societal, and economic well being of systems and organizations.
    Mark R. Lehto & James M. Miller
    James M. Miller, Mark R. Lehto & J. Paul Frantz
    James M. Miller, Mark R. Lehto
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    David Gossman
    Chief Investigating Officer
    103 South Main Street
    Maquoketa IA 52060
    USA
    phone: 563-652-2822
    fax: 563-652-2824

    Technical assistance to counsel in litigation involving  Fires and Explosions, Chemical and Environmental Forensics, Hazardous Waste and Materials, Regulatory Compliance, Dioxins,  and injury or chemical exposure claims including those due to hazardous materials or operations. We provide the technical expertise and develop the evidentiary basis for legal arguments relying on or involving:

    • Industrial and environmental chemical forensic analysis
    • Causation proved by fate and transport of chemicals and their degradation products in the environment
    • Appropriate standard of care for and regulations of hazardous waste and hazardous materials
    • Safety and prevention of catastrophic events such as fires and explosions
    • Prevention of injury or chemical exposure resulting from hazardous materials or hazardous materials operations
    • Prevention of chemical spills and/or proper management of historical environmental contamination

    Our current newsletter and publications are available in our website library.


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