Accident investigation/reconstruction is more than just a job or even a profession; it is more art than science and requires a dedication greater than a commitment of time. It takes constant reading, study, and analysis of accident information and case reconstructions to keep improving your performance, both in the field and in the courtroom.
Vehicular Accident Investigation and Reconstruction concentrates on the development of the skills, education, and information needed for an accident investigation and reconstruction, including the necessary tools, some of the pitfalls facing the investigator/reconstructionist and the latest advances and techniques in the field.
The book is divided into four sections:
Section 1 -- Describes the need for proper accident investigation, the specialized tools, education, and the necessary mindset
Section 2 -- Deals with reconstruction, which requires deductive reasoning, logic, physics, engineering, and a general knowledge of the accident subject
Section 3 -- Discusses occupant kinematics or body movement and reaction to external forces, including human anatomy, physiology, human tolerance to impact, and occupant reactions to various types of impacts
Section 4 -- Discusses latest techniques for investigation and reconstruction, citing examples such as electronic scene mapping, computer animation, computer accident simulation, and the use of the computer in the courtroom.
Why Investigate Accidents?
Where do I Start?
Tools and Special Equipment for the Investigator
Vehicle and Occupant Investigation Forms
Surrogates, Animation, and Computer Simulations in Preparing Exhibits
Sources of Information
Depositions and Courtroom Appearances
Unusual Case Histories
"This is an essential text for any attorney involved in personal injury litigation. Mr. Van Kirk has used his considerable experience to organize and present highly technical information in a manner that is extremely useful."
- Geoffrey N. Fieger, Attorney and Counselor at Law, Fieger, Fieger, Schwartz & Kenney, P.C., Southfield, Michigan