Crane Engineering is available to present to your law firm, insurance company or professional association on a number of topics. There is an option to have us apply for CLE credits for legal professionals in advance of presentations in the state of Minnesota. Review the topic list below and click on one of the presenters to contact us about presenting to your organization.

Minor Vehicles Crash and Injury Analysis
Presenter: André Loyd, Ph.D.

This presentation covers the accident reconstruction of minor car accidents (delta-V less than 10mph) and how to assess the risk of bodily injury from minor car accidents. For the accident reconstruction, the presentation defines minor car accidents and shows various techniques for finding the Delta-V of the vehicles. For the injury analysis, the delta-V will be related to forces and accelerations on the human body and risk of injury. Geared towards lawyers, the presentation will show the information needed for a complete analysis and provide four case studies to show how the analysis is done.

Large Loss Incidents in Industrial Settings
Presenters: Chris Brand, P.E.Hernán Mercado-Corujo, P.E.

Overview of accident site management, with case studies to demonstrate the latest tools and techniques used in accident site data collection and analysis. Discussion on determining the root cause of an accident from the MACRO to the micro-level details.

Managing Slippery Slopes: Recent Developments in Measurement of Walkway Slip Resistance
Presenter: Chris Brand, P.E

Estimated costs of slip, trip and fall incidents are in the tens of billions of dollars annually. Several factors contribute but the condition of the walkway is a common and preventable cause. This presentation will focus on recent advancements in standards and measurement of walkway slip resistance

Site and Incident Management
Presenters: Curtis Beloy, P.E.Jim Panko, P.E.

When accidents happen, be it on a small scale such as a low-speed collision or on a larger scale such as an explosion, the amount of liability left in the wake of a mishap can be astronomical. A crucial aspect of forensic engineering is being able to properly manage and document an incident site. Site and Incident Management focuses on the latest technology and techniques to properly conduct site documentation and collateral damage assessments.

Forensic Engineering Investigations/Applications and Case Studies
Presenter: Hernán Mercado-Corujo, P.E.

Forensic Engineering Applications and Investigations covers how we utilize the scientific method to find the root cause of a problem. From accident reconstruction, to mechanical inspections, to powertrain analysis, and vehicle fire origin and cause determination, we discuss Crane’s multi-disciplinary approach to the investigation of land-based vehicles and machinery, such as passenger cars, motorcycles, ATVs, snowmobiles, farming equipment, etc.

Vehicle Technology Trends That Will Make a Difference: A Forensic Engineering Perspective
Presenter: Hernán Mercado-Corujo, P.E.

This presentation deals with basic accident reconstruction case studies as well as an overview of event data recorders, human-machine interaction, active control systems, and turbo-diesel engines. Achieving a balance between safety and functionality is often the goal of vehicle manufacturers when designing the interior’s interface. Also, with the advent of semi-autonomous vehicles come several passive and active systems such as lane departure warning and adaptive cruise control. This new technology must be understood when investigating an accident involving a newer vehicle.

Critical Data
Presenter: Matt Jeske, CBE, ACE

Understand the sensitivity of your organization’s data. Learn about the tools and methods used by data forensics experts to collect data. Learn how to strategize across all aspects of your business—pulling together and preparing an incident response plan (IRP) and team. Discuss the details of how data forensics can serve a key role in traditional and unique cases in the event of loss.

Data Forensics: Present and Future
Presenter: Matt Jeske, CBE, ACE

Overview of data forensics, providing details on the key services a data forensics expert can perform and when you should consider consulting with an outside firm. A discussion on the impacts of cloud services and the Internet of Things (IoT) and what it means to your business, your clients and your personal life.

Latest Attacks and Counters
Presenter: Matt Jeske, CBE, ACE

This presentation offers a deeper dive into the more technical issues confronted during a cyber-attack, including a discussion on the most recent cyber-attack methods, targets, sources and the current countermeasures being used to identify and defend the attackers.

Overview on Data Forensics
Presenter: Matt Jeske, CBE, ACE

What are the capabilities of data forensics today? Things to consider when you’re handling a legal matter that involves an incident of digital records. I will discuss the tools used and how they are critical in handling data to ensure that spoliation does not take place—why not just any geek off the street can do the job right. Discuss how to protect your organization’s data and your personally identifiable information (PII).

Solutions for Legal: The Good and Bad of BYOD
Presenter: Matt Jeske, CBE, ACE

Discussing the pros and cons of BYOD in the workplace—the risks and rewards, the impacts on internal IT departments and the need to advise legal counsel in the decision-making process. Further discussion of similar aspects of choosing cloud service providers.

Forensic Engineering and Occupational Injuries
Presenters: Steve Hamilton, P.E., André Loyd, Ph.D.

Crane Engineering often investigates accidents that result in employee injuries in the workplace. The first part of this presentation defines forensic engineering and shows how the scientific method is applied in forensic analysis. The second part shows case studies of forensic investigations of workplace injuries and identifies the human factors involved in the incidents. The case studies range from falls, electrocutions and vehicular accidents. This presentation will give insight into the factors involved in workplace injuries that occur using real world examples.

Magnetic Interference from Light Rail
Presenter: Steve Hamilton, P.E.

Light Rail transit creates small but measurable electro-magnetic interference (EMI) that can impact sensitive medical and research equipment operation. This presentation describes light rail, how it creates EMI and what can be practically done to mitigate it.

Thawing Frozen Water Services with Electricity
Presenter: Steve Hamilton, P.E.

Every few decades the upper mid-west experiences a winter with prolonged sub-zero temperatures. During these rare events residential water lines are prone to freezing. For more than 100 years these lines have often been thawed by applying large amounts of electrical current through the pipes thereby heating them. Although effective, this technique can result in disaster. This presentation will explore the benefits and risks in this method of pipe thawing.

Changes to the Minnesota Building & Commercial Energy Code
Presenters: Andy Thielen, P.E.,  Steve Hamilton, P.E.

The latest edition of the Minnesota Building Code has numerous changes that effect designers and contractors who are building or modifying commercial facilities. This informational presentation will highlight some of the major changes to be aware of.

The Role of the Power Company in Fire Investigations
Presenter: Lee McCarthy, P.E.

This presentation provides a brief overview of the basics of fire investigation and includes the general steps involved in a typical civil liability fire investigation. It explains the role of the expert, attorney, and utilities representative during those steps. Focus will also be on what the power company should be aware of and consider prior to determining what they may or may not want to do during a fire investigation.

Fire Forensics & Electric Utilities
Presenter: Scott Dillon, P.E.

This presentation covers the basics of Fire Investigation with an emphasis on electric utilities, including typical methodology and what the utility should and should not do.

Investigating Failures of Fire Sprinkler Systems: Guidelines for Successfully Determining the Root Cause of Failures
Presenter: Scott Dillon, P.E.

This discussion will include:
  • Types of sprinkler system failures.
  • Legal considerations for conducting a forensic investigation.
  • Typical phases of a forensic investigation.
  • The role of the sprinkler system designer, installer and ITM provider in the investigation process.
  • The impact of performing system repairs prior to an investigation.
  • Highlights of Fire Science and Fire Investigation
    Presenter: Scott Dillon, P.E.

    This presentation will delve into the following areas:
  • Fire investigation basics.
  • Typical phases of a forensic investigation.
  • The role of the fire suppression system designer, installer, ITM firm, etc.
  • The impact of performing system repairs prior to an investigation.
  • Fire Dynamics
    Presenter: Scott Dillon, P.E.

    Discussion about the basics of fire dynamics.

    Fire Suppression Systems
    Presenter: Scott Dillon, P.E.

    This presentation will discuss the basics of fire protection systems and sprinkler system design/sprinkler layout.

    Electrical Origin Fires
    Presenter: Steve Hamilton, P.E.

    A look at several unusual sources of electrical fires including counterfeit parts, inappropriate wire terminations, electrolytic capacitor life span and battery/charger mismatch. These four areas are supplemented with case studies and best practices on preventing fires from these incidents.

    How a Biomechanical Engineer Can Help You in Your Criminal Case
    Presenter:  André Loyd, Ph.D.

    This presentation covers how to use biomechanics to defend your clients.  Included is a quick overview of the definition of a biomechanic, followed by a discussion of how a biomechanic can identify the cause of injuries and how to distinguish between an intentional injury and an accidental injury.  The presentation shows what cases a biomechanic can be helpful for and exactly what questions can be answered by a biomechanic.  The presentation concludes with real life examples of how biomechanics have helped with cases.  

    Electrical Substations and Transformers
    Presenter:  Steve Hamilton, P.E.

    Substations and transformers are used in electrical distribution from the utility to the end user.  This presentation takes a high level look at the components found in a substation, common failure modes of the equipment and some preventative measures.

    More Than Just a "Pretty Picture":  Use of Finite Element Analysis in Failure Analysis
    Presenter:  Chris Brand, P.E.

    Finite Element Analysis has been historically used primarily in the front end of product development. A new design concept is modeled, detailed and then expect loads are simulated virtually prior to a prototype being made. The expectation being that problems with the design can be mitigated prior to prototypes and final production parts being produced. However, the same analysis tools can be used on the failure analysis side to gain insight into how a component failed and assist the prevention of future failures. This presentation will present some basic concepts in FEA as well as several failure analysis case studies using FEA.

    How to Work with Scientific and Engineering Experts
    Presenter:  Scott Dillon, P.E.

    An overview on how to work with scientific and engineering experts to assist in the investigation and litigation of claims. Various aspects of the litigation process from the initial notice letter through trial are covered. Mr. Dillon’s work typically involves fires and explosions as well as fire protection systems. 

    Topics include:
  • Types of scientific and engineering experts.
  • Deciding when you need an expert and what type.
  • Evaluating appropriateness and qualifications of experts.
  • Understanding what an expert can and cannot do for your case.
  • Budget expectations.
  • Communicating with experts.
  • Coordinating litigation strategy with experts.
  • Preparation of expert reports.
  • Deposition and trial preparation.
  • Summary of top Dos and Don’ts when working with an expert.
  • Foundation Engineering Design and Coverage Issues
    Presenter:   Jim Panko, P.E.

    This presentation provides an overview of various foundation types including concrete, masonry, wood and drilled piers.  The presentation looks into the causes of foundation cracking and deterioration that can lead to a potential claim or construction defect litigation. I will also discuss the effects that pyrrhotite has in concrete foundations. I will illustrate the characteristics and symptoms of a concrete foundation containing pyrrhotite.  The presentation utilizes photographs from actual cases and exemplar materials to help illustrate the points of discussion.

    Technology You Need When Investigating a Construction Loss
    Presenter:  Scott Nesvold, P.E.

    Learn about advances in technology for investigating a complex construction loss, be it accident, building collapse, crane collapse, or defect, as well as how drones, computer accident/loss simulations, and more can assist in defending claims.

    Carbon Monoxide Incident Investigation: Complex Causation and Complex Litigation
    Presenters:  Matt Wilber, CGE, CFEIScott Sollars, P.E.

    This presentation highlights common causes of carbon monoxide incidents, and the complexity associated with modern combustion appliances. The inter-relationship between appliances and the building envelope as well as the parties involved will be covered.

    Biomechanics: Motor Vehicles and Industrial Accidents
    Presenter:  André Loyd, Ph. D.

    This session will highlight the key role of biomechanics in motor vehicle and industrial accident litigation. It will show how biomechanics use all pertinent information to determine injury mechanisms and explore the difference between a medical doctor and a biomechanical engineer.

    From Uptown to Downtown: Issues Regarding Mixed-Use Multi-Level Construction
    Presenters:  Jim Panko, P.E.Scott Nesvold, P.E.Andy Thielen, P.E.

    Multi-story wood construction has been a popular trend in recent years. This presentation will discuss various issues that can arise from this type of construction including story shrinkage, façade systems, mechanical systems and fire protection issues.

    Motor Vehicle Technology Trends—Forensic Engineering in the Approaching Age of Autonomous Vehicles
    Presenter:  Hernán Mercado-Corujo, P.E.

    This presentation will focus on explaining different vehicle technologies available today that are paving the way for autonomous vehicles. We will discuss the impact from the investigation standpoint and potential theories of liability. Case studies will be used to illustrate some concepts.

    How to Use Experts to Successfully Navigate Slips, Trips, Falls
    Presenters:  Jim Panko, P.E., André Loyd, Ph.D.

    Slips, trips and falls can occur in a wide range of locations. This presentation will discuss how applicable building codes and standards will vary depending on the location of the accident and how these codes and standards may affect your litigation. This presentation will also highlight how biomechanical analysis can be used for evaluating claimed injuries relating to the alleged event.

    Increasing Risks of Lithium-Ion Batteries and Counterfeit Products—Fires & Other Issues
    Presenter:  Steve Hamilton, P.E. 

    Lithium-ion batteries have attracted significant attention due to the risk of fires on phones, laptops and other consumer products. This presentation will focus on explaining the technology and the factors that increase the risk of a battery failure. In addition, we will explore the role of counterfeit products and their increasing involvement in product failures.

    Rogue Particles: Sometimes It's the Little Things
    Presenter:  Mark Weiss

    This presentation will explore the analysis of small particulate contaminants and/or foreign object debris (FOD). In an effort to identify the FOD and its source, we'll be exploring the pros and cons of various analyses available when examining small contaminants, both as free and embedded particulate. We will also be looking at minimum sample sizes for various techniques.

    Virtual Testing: Use of Computer Simulation for Better Products
    Presenter:  Chris Brand, P.E.

    Computer simulation software, such as Finite Element Analysis (FEA) or Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), is widely used in the industry to do virtual mechanical tests. Using a 3D CAD model of a particular component or assembly, mechanical loads (e.g., forces, heat, wind) are applied and results are computed. These results give you deeper insight into the performance of your products than physical testing alone. Furthermore, test parameters can be changed and run easily, thus reducing the expensive investment of time and money for additional prototypes and testing.

    Reverse Engineering: If Only "Bob" Hadn't Retired!
    Presenter:  Lloyd Meissner, P.E.

    The techniques of reverse engineering are often required for a wide variety of reasons. These include:
  • Benchmarking a competitor’s product
  • Helping define legacy hardware not fully defined due to:
  • Source control drawing only
  • Supplier change, bankruptcy or catastrophic event (flood or hurricane)
  • Customer failures
  • Counterfeit hardware
  • Employee turnover
  • Reverse engineering will enable a much better description of the product to be defined to minimize design iterations.