- single vehicle accidents, including going off the roadway and striking fixed items, such as utility poles
- two vehicle collisions, at various angles, such as:
- automobiles • pick-up trucks • vans • sport utility vehicles (SUVs) • cars • pickup trucks
- specialized smaller vehicles, such as ambulances and ambulettes
- motorcycles • off-road motorbikes • motorcyclists
- pedestrians • motorists • vehicle passengers
- school buses • city buses
- agricultural equipment, including farm tractors and trailers
- accident site inspection, measurement and photography
- inspection, measurement and photography of damaged vehicles and vehicle components
- inspection of vehicle lamps (headlights, taillights, etc.) and lamp filaments, when appropriate
- sight distance and nighttime visibility studies
- skid testing of vehicles and determination of "drag" factors
- accident sight photogrammetry • graphical photogrammetry from photographs
- study and consideration of accident evidence and data available from other sources, including police accident investigations, Crash Data Retrieval from the vehicles, and statements and testimony of witnesses
- evaluation of roadway surface condition, skidmarks, yawmarks, scuff marks, other tiremarks, gouges, other roadway and off-roadway surface damage, and debris
- evaluation of vehicle and vehicle component damage, including evaluation of vehicle lamp and lamp filament condition to determine if lamps were on at collision
- evaluation of mechanical injuries to pedestrians and vehicle occupants
- evaluation of roadway design and pre-accident condition (for safety) and traffic control devices, such as lane lines, warning and other signs, traffic control lights and other signals (for suitability)
- preparation of scale site drawings, and use in accident analysis
- determination of the pre-collision movements of vehicles and pedestrians in relation to time, distance and each other (time-distance studies)
- engineering analysis of the movements (dynamics) of vehicles, pedestrians, and vehicle occupants during an accident, relative to each other, and relative to fixed items in the accident area, such as utility poles
- determination of acceleration and maneuverability capabilities of vehicles, particularly related to possible accident activities
- complete traffic accident reconstruction, both manually and by computer, to address the required issues
- speeds of vehicles at various points before and during an accident
- locations of vehicles, pedestrians, bicycles, etc., before and at various times during an accident
- sight distance, nighttime visibility and weather-impeded visibility
- appropriateness of roadway design and traffic control devices (such as lane lines, warning and other signs, and traffic control and pedestrian control signals), and their relation to an accident
- the relation of the condition of roadway facilities to an accident, including drainage issues related to water and/or ice on the roadway
- answers to questions, such as:
- Were all vehicles moving at collision? If not, which ones were moving and stopped?
- Did vehicles stop at stop signs or red lights before collision?
- Which vehicle was left of center first, and also at collision?
- Which vehicle occupant was driving when the accident occurred?
- Were the headlights and/or other vehicle lights on at collision?
- What was the accident causation?
- Did the roadway configuration, construction or condition cause or contribute to the accident?
- What was the relation of the accident factors to the accident causation?
- Could the accident have been avoided by any participant in the accident?
Senior Forensic Engineer James D. Madden, P.E. Earned Certificates of Successful Completion in 10 courses, over 9 1/2 weeks, in the Traffic Accident Investigation and Reconstruction program at Northwestern University Traffic Institute / Center for Public Safety, including:
- Technical Accident Investigation (2 weeks)
- Vehicle Dynamics (1 week)
- Traffic Accident Reconstruction (2 weeks)
- Continued Case Studies in Traffic Accident Reconstruction (1 week)
- Computer-Assisted Traffic Accident Reconstruction (1 week)
- Motorcycle Accident Reconstruction (2 days)
- Vehicle Lamp Examination, covering interpretation of collision damage to lamps (3 days)
- Crash Data Retrieval (CDR)* Certification Courses and CDR Technician and Data Analyst Certifications, covering retrieval of crash data, pre-crash data, and other data from the Event Data Recorders (EDRs) in passenger cars, SUVs, and light trucks such as pickup trucks and vans, and the analysis of this data, in the following 3 courses:
Consultation is available before starting a case. We invite you to
consult with us. There is no charge for an initial phone consultation.
Call us, or if you prefer we can schedule the consultation in advance.
Consultation with James D. Madden, PE, a Professional Engineer, and Forensic
Engineering Consulting and Testifying Expert Witness, is available to the client at all
times during the work - before, during, and after the investigation,
engineering analysis, reconstruction, report, and any other work on the case.
Download a Summary or Detailed Curriculum Vitae (CV) / Resume' for James D. Madden, P.E.,
email us, and bookmark this website.
Qualifications of James D. Madden, P.E., Senior Forensic Engineer
Downloads and Links - Curriculum Vitae, Email and Bookmark
For mailing address, phone, fax and email address click a button below the Fee Schedule section.
Over the last 30 years we have regularly worked on accidents which occurred in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, New York and nearby, including inspections of accident sites, equipment, and facilities, with reports and testimony. During these 30 years we have also worked on accidents which occurred in other states, and equipment and facilities located in other states, with inspections of accident sites, equipment, and facilities, from Kansas and Utah to Vermont and North Carolina, with reports and testimony for these accidents, when applicable.
Geographic Area of Work - North America
Contact us to discuss your case by phone at NO CHARGE.
This consultation can be scheduled in advance to meet your schedule.
Contact us by phone, fax, mail or email for a copy of the Fee Schedule for charges for engineering
and consulting services and testimony. Click a button below for contact information.
attended seminars on traffic accident investigation and reconstruction presented by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE)
prepared by state and federal authorities and take into consideration the more restricted role that Safeguards can take in use with highways and roadways compared to, for example, stationary machinery. These codes and standards include the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices issued by the various states and the federal government.
These codes and standards, and associated manuals, also take into consideration the significant role that drivers, other users of the roadways and persons who encounter roadways, play in the traffic system. These also take into consideration the long history of the use of written signage, auditory warnings (for example, bells at railroad crossings), symbols on signage and roadway surfaces, and visual control devices (for example, traffic control lights), and the expectations that this long history brings from the public.
Of particular concern is the fact that for this traffic system, to be fully effective, it must be learned by all drivers, in most cases at a relatively early age, and changes cannot be easily communicated to all drivers over the subsequent decades, once they have learned the system.
For more information on Safeguards and Warnings click on >>>
took 10 courses, as listed below, at the Northwestern University Traffic Institute/Center for Public Safety, specifically designed to teach investigation and reconstruction of traffic accidents, based on engineering mechanics, physics and mathematics, using the tools of accident investigation and reconstruction
● verbal reports, by telephone or in face-to-face conferences
We present the results of our investigations, engineering analyses and reconstructions in
the client's choice of any, or all, of the following:
Presentation of results of our work
Our work investigating, analyzing and reconstructing accidents, and presenting the results, may include any
or all of the following, depending on the needs of the case:
Our Typical Work Activities and Products, when warranted by the case
● written reports and affidavits
● deposition testimony, including video deposition
● trial testimony and arbitration testimony
James D. Madden, P.E., while performing Forensic Engineering work full-time for over
the last 30 years, for both plaintiff and defendant, has to date:
Forensic Engineering Work by Senior Forensic Engineer James D. Madden, P.E.
● completed over 1000 cases
● written and issued over 600 reports
● testified in over 90 depositions
● written and issued over 60 affidavits
● testified in over 75 trials
took 16 college courses in mathematics, physics and engineering mechanics, the scientific bases for traffic accident reconstruction
● attended engineering seminars presented by the National Academy of Forensic Engineers
regularly attend additional technical courses and seminars each year to meet the requirements for continuing engineering education for the Professional Engineer's license
● over 40 years of engineering experience, with:
● 17 years experience in industrial operations, engineering design and construction assistance
● 30 years experience in forensic engineering, including:
● working on over 1000 cases
● issuing over 600 reports and over 60 affidavits
● testifying in over 90 depositions and over 75 trials
Experience and Qualifications of James D. Madden, P.E. in regard to Traffic Crashes
and Accidents, including roadway design, maintenance and safety issues such as
signage, signals, striping (lines on the roadway) and geometric configuration
Our Engineering Analyses of Traffic Accidents and Crashes include, as appropriate, a complete investigation, engineering analysis and reconstruction of the traffic accident, either manually or by computer, as required to address the required issues. Our engineering analyses of traffic accidents include analysis of potential roadway issues and effects of driver actions and inactions.
As part of the Engineering Analyses of Traffic Accidents and Crashes we perform the following activities, and others, when appropriate:
As part of the Engineering Analyses of Traffic Accidents and Crashes we address the following issues, and others, when appropriate:
- large non-articulated trucks, including those with:
- trucks with semi-trailers (tractor-trailers, "18 wheelers")
- trucks with independently supported trailers ("full trailers")
- triaxle (three) rear axles
including non-articulated trucks such as:
including truck-tractors, with trailers such as:
- stake and flatbed trailers
- at other impact angles between the vehicles
Roadway design, construction and maintenance is regulated by legislation and codes and standards. These codes and standards are prepared and issued by state and federal authorities. They include Standards for highway design, construction and maintenance issued by the various states and the federal government. They are include Recommended Practices, Guidelines and Policies issued by the Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), including the Roadside Design Guide and the Policy on the Geometric Design of Highways and Streets.
Roadway design, construction and maintenance codes and standards serve different purposes, one of which is to provide roads which are safer than would the case without such standards. Non-conformance with highway design, construction and maintenance standards which are intended to promote a safer roadway can be expected to lead to less safe highways and streets than would otherwise be the case.
For more information on Codes and Standards click on >>>
- articulated truck assemblies, including:
click on underlined words to use links - if no word is underlined try hovering the mouse over words to see any underlines
Our Engineering Analysis of Traffic Accidents
▪ including Accident Investigation and Reconstruction
Examples of Types of Traffic Accidents Analyzed
● see examples of vehicles and persons involved in analyzed accidents in next section below
Examples of Vehicles and Persons Involved in Analyzed Traffic Accidents
● see examples of types of traffic accidents analyzed in previous section above
Coursework at Northwestern University Traffic Institute / Center for Public Safety
Traffic Signs, Signals, Markings and Warnings
● also see highway, street and roadside codes, standards, guidelines etc. in the previous section above
Highway, Street and Roadside Codes, Standards, Guidelines and Recommended Practices
● also see traffic signs, signals, markings and warnings in the next section below
over 450 traffic accidents, have been investigated and reconstructed as part of the forensic engineering work during the last 30 years, including engineering analysis of highway design and safety issues, such as geometric configuration, road condition, drainage, signage, striping and conformance to the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices and design standards
earned 2 Engineering degrees, Bachelor of Science and Master of Engineering, and took additional post-degree coursework, with coursework in physics, chemistry, mathematics, engineering mechanics, mechanical engineering, chemical engineering and normal psychology
at the start of forensic work, completed refresher and additional post-degree college credit coursework and continuing education coursework in mechanical engineering, metallurgy and materials
earned the Professional Engineers license (P.E.) by taking the National Council of Engineering Examiners' (NCEE) examination in Fundamentals of Engineering and the Mechanical Engineering and Chemical Engineering sections of the NCEE examination in Principles and Practices of Engineering
designated a Diplomate Forensic Engineer by the National Academy of Forensic Engineers in accordance with the standards of the Council of Engineering and Scientific Specialty Boards (CESB)
<< click for a description of the typical activities and work performed
<< click for examples of Types of traffic accidents analyzed
<< click for examples of Vehicles and Persons involved in traffic accidents analyzed
<< click for discussion regarding Highway Standards, Codes, and related material
<< click for discussion regarding Signs, Signals, Markings and Warnings
Our work also includes engineering analysis of the effects on the accident of driver actions, driver condition, vehicle condition, and weather, ambient light and lighting conditions. Engineering analysis of the roadway design and condition and traffic control devices, and determination of the effect of these factors on the accident is also included in our work. Our work also includes assessment of adherence to applicable codes, standards and recommended practices, including applicable highway and roadway design standards. Our analysis includes assessment of adherence to the applicable Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices, which controls the use of traffic control devices on streets, roads and highways.
Traffic control devices include traffic control signals (red-yellow-green, flashing yellow, etc.) roadway signs, painted lines on the pavement (called "striping"), curbing, abutments, etc., used to control traffic patterns. The applicable Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) covers the requirements for these devices and the acceptable application of these devices. This subject is covered in more detail below in 'Highway, Street and Roadside Codes, Standards...'. Click on the underlined words in this website to link to the sections named. Our investigation of Traffic Accidents includes, when appropriate, inspection of the accident site and the accident vehicles and many other items as listed under 'Our Engineering Analysis' below. Also see 'Typical Work' below for other activities typically involved in our work. Our work with Traffic Accidents and Crashes is an engineering activity based on accepted engineering standards and practices and the science of Engineering Mechanics, the science of movement and forces. Engineering Mechanics is the practical engineering science derived from the theoretical science, physics, and is the basis for the calculation techniques and equations used in traffic accident reconstruction. Formal education in Engineering and Engineering Mechanics has been augmented with a broad range of courses in Traffic Accident Investigation and Reconstruction taken at the Northwestern University Traffic Institute / Center for Public Safety. These courses are listed below in 'Coursework at Northwestern University...'. Our work with Traffic Accidents and Crashes includes appropriate involvement of Human Factors as this relates to the capabilities and actions of the vehicle drivers and other participants. See 'Experience and Qualifications...' below for this experience and the other qualifications for work with Traffic Accidents. Also see 'Human Factors' on another page for more information regarding Human Factors work with the forensic work.
Our work with Traffic Accidents and Crashes - includes investigation and reconstruction of the accident to determine how the accident occurred, and how the factors associated with the accident, including pre-crash events, were related to the causation of the accident.
The use of Warnings on highways and roadways - in the whole traffic system - is regulated by legislation and codes and standards for traffic applications. These codes and standards are
- out-of-control slides and yaws
- rollovers and/or launches, including off embankments
- off-road travel, intended or unintended, and abrupt change in travel surfaces
- adverse roadway conditions and road-edge dropoffs
- multiple collisions between the same vehicles
- more than two vehicles with chain collisions
- motor vehicles of the same type, such as 2 or more automobiles, or 2 or more trucks
- motor vehicles of different types, such as collisions between automobiles, trucks and/or buses
- motor vehicles and pedestrians or bicycles
- motorcycles and other motor vehicles
- motor vehicles or bicycles and railroad trains at railroad grade crossings
^^^ click on buttons to go to other pages covering these subjects ^^^
- CDR Technician Certification Courses 1 & 2 - classroom (CDR Tech 1) and hands-on (CDR Tech 2) training in the techniques for retrieval of crash data and other recorded data from Event Data Recorders (EDRs) through the vehicle Data Link Connector (DLC) and directly from the EDRs associated with the vehicle control modules (1 day for each of the 2 courses)
Crash Data Retrieval (CDR) is the term for the retrieval of crash data, pre-crash data, and other recorded data from passenger cars, SUVs and light trucks using a specific software and hardware system designed for this purpose. This system was originally designed by Vetronix, and later acquired by Bosch. The system has been expanded since its origination. The system was designed in conjunction with vehicle manufacturers, with involvement by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA) in developing requirements. This system accesses selected control modules in many vehicles for the crash and event related data. This data is recorded on the Event Data Recorders (EDR) associated with Airbag Control Modules (ACM), Powertrain Control Modules (PCM) or Roll-over Sensors (ROS) in these vehicles. This data is retrieved either directly from the modules or through the Diagnostic Link Connector (DLC), using equipment specifically designed for this purpose. The specific components of vehicles associated with Crash Data Retrieval, and the names and acronyms assigned to these components, can vary by vehicle manufacturer.
Traffic Crashes, Accidents - Table of Contents - links to content on this page
Madden Accident Analysis & Forensic Engineering, through its Senior Forensic Engineer, James D. Madden, P.E., a licensed professional engineer, has performed Accident Investigations, Engineering Analyses and Accident Reconstructions for accidents, incidents and cases in the metropolitan areas of Cleveland, Akron, Canton, Toledo, Warren, Youngstown, Mansfield, Columbus, Dayton, Cincinnati, Lima, Findlay, Marietta and Steubenville, as well elsewhere throughout Ohio, and the metropolitan areas of Pittsburgh and Erie, as well as elsewhere throughout western and central Pennsylvania, and the metropolitan areas of Detroit, Ann Arbor, Lansing, Flint and Port Huron, as well as elsewhere in southern Michigan, and the metropolitan areas of Buffalo and Syracuse, as well as elsewhere in western and central New York state. In many of these areas James D. Madden, P.E. has provided expert reports and testified in the capacity of an Expert Witness in court proceedings, including depositions, arbitrations and/or trials.
Madden Accident Analysis & Forensic Engineering, through its Senior Forensic Engineer James D. Madden, P.E., is available for Accident Investigations, Engineering Analyses, Accident Reconstructions, and testimony in deposition, arbitration and trial, for cases located throughout North America.
Engineering Analysis may include analysis of the following:
See details of the forensic work throughout this website, and a summary on the Employment Page.
The qualifications of James D. Madden, P.E., Senior Forensic Engineer, Consulting and Testifying
and also on the Specialties Work Page for the relation of these Qualifications to specific Forensic Specialties. <<< Click on the underlined text
Use the Search Box at the left to search the whole website.
Use Control F, 'Ctrl' + 'F', to locate specific words on this page.
Bookmark this site by typing Control D ('Ctr' + 'D').
■ Types of Traffic Accidents (■ photos) ■ Vehicles and Persons (■ photos) ■ Engineering Analysis (■ photos) ■ Contact Us by Phone, Mail or Email ■ Consult, before and after assignment ■ Fee Schedule availability ■ Geographic Area available for Work ■ Links to Other Pages (left sidebars)
click on the underlined squares to link to the subjects
■ Our Work with Traffic Accidents, including those involving vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists, etc. ■ Our Forensic Engineering Work - number of ● Cases ● Reports ● Affidavits ● Testimonies ■ Our Typical Work Activities & Products ■ Presentation of Results of Work ■ additional Qualifications ■ Curriculum Vitae, CV, Resume' ■ Traffic Accident Work Activities ■ Traffic Accident Issues Addressed ■ Traffic Accident Experience ■ Traffic Accident Courses ■ Traffic Signs & Signals (■ photos)
● inspection of the accident site, such as a roadway, outdoor facilities, building or industrial facilities
inspection of the involved equipment, in current condition, including in damaged condition (such as crashed vehicles); and when available for operation, during operation (such as industrial equipment)
● interviewing witnesses (often during the inspection of the accident site, product and/or equipment)
coordinating or interfacing with others while they are preparing specialized exhibits such as video animations and videos of demonstrations
review and study of case documents, evidence and applicable codes, standards, regulations and recommended practices
● written reports and affidavits, and exhibits
drawings, calculations, graphical analyses, computer analyses, etc. as required to analyze and reconstruct the accident, and to present the engineering analysis and reconstruction
● testing accident items and exemplar items (such as consumer products)
● photography and/or video of the accident site and involved equipment
● testimony in deposition, trial and arbitration
- CDR Data Analyst Certification Course - training in the analysis of crash data, pre-crash and other recorded data from Event Data Recorders associated with vehicle control modules, considering the differences in recording and reporting by different manufacturers, for different models and model years (1 week)
The Bosch CDR System is a specialized data collection and data readout system. The data in the Bosch Report does not necessarily have the meaning that an untrained person reading the Bosch Report might think. For this reason the CDR Data Analyst Certification program was established to train persons in the correct interpretation of the data so that persons who will be interpreting the Bosch CDR data can interpret it correctly.
■ Analysis of Accident Data in Crash Data Retrieval (CDR) Reports [also called "black box" data reports]
Work will include the following, as appropriate for the accident:
click on items below, following the squares, to go to the listed subjects
This page also includes the following:
* data from the so-called vehicle "black boxes"
for more information,
click on subject listings below
for more information,
click on subject listings below
|> Traffic Accidents, Crashes|
|> Premises, Bldg, Property|
| incl. Slips, Trips & Falls|
|> Workplace - Industrial,|
| Commercial, Construction,|
| Farm, Forest, Extraction|
|> Equipment and Machinery|
| > Equip. Fire or Explosion, |
| > Hazardous Combustion,|
| incl. Carbon Monoxide |
| (CO) death or poisoning|
|> Consumer Products|
|> Chemicals and Materials|
| incl. Gases & Compounds|
Related Basic Specialties
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Madden Accident Analysis & Forensic Engineering
over 30 Years Investigating, Analyzing, Reconstructing & Testifying about Accidents
Forensic Engineering & Scientific Accident Reconstruction
Copyright 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016, 2018, 2019 by Madden Accident Analysis & Forensic Engineering and James D. Madden, P.E., aka James Madden and Jim Madden.
All rights reserved. This website contains photographs which are licensed with restrictions that prohibit downloading, reproduction, re-publication or re-transmission.
Madden Accident Analysis & Forensic Engineering
1700 West Market Street, Suite 318, Akron, Ohio 44313 -or-
8803 Brecksville Road, Suite 7-216, Cleveland, Ohio 44141
phone: 440-838-1191 or 440-832-9540, fax: 440-838-1192
Madden Accident Analysis & Forensic Engineering, through its Senior Forensic Engineer, James D. Madden, P.E., a licensed professional engineer, has performed Accident Investigations, Engineering Analyses and Accident Reconstructions routinely for accidents, incidents and cases located in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and New York, in the technical areas which are noted in this website, as well as providing expert reports and testifying in court proceedings in these states in the capacity of an Expert Witness, including depositions, arbitrations and/or trials, with Forensic Engineering work also performed in, and/or for cases in, Illinois, Maryland, North Carolina, Vermont, Kansas and Utah, with testimony in court in Kansas.