Expertly Speaking

Bearing Overload Results in Crane Collapse

Gerald Gambs, Jr., PE, MME ::::

Case Synopsis: A large, rubber-tiered straddle crane, 50 feet tall and 75 feet wheelbase, was being operated in a rail yard, loading and unloading 40 foot containers.  At the end of the graveyard shift, the operator executed a "swing" turn across a triple track, in order that the only operational cab would be on the optimum side for the next shift.   During the swing turn, one of the wheels buckled under the frame and the crane collapsed. During the collapse, the turntable bearing at the wheel yoke-to-frame interface ruptured.

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Aftermarket Alterations Defeat Important Safety System

R. Scott King, BSME ::::

Case Analysis: Most commercial tractor-trailers have standardized fittings that connect the tractor’s air and electrical systems to the trailer.  These hoses, lines, and fittings are typically located at the rear of the tractor cab and often require the operator to climb behind the cab to make the necessary connections.  Various industry guidelines and standards prescribe the type, location, and geometry of these cab, and rear-of-cab, ingress and egress systems and components, and require three points of contact between the operator and the vehicle.

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Event Data Recorder (EDR) Update 2011

There are several updates to the EDR hardware and software allowing for retrieval of vital information from 2011 passenger vehicles and trucks. To ascertain if the vehicle on your matter is EDR supported, please contact Scott King at

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New Lifts in Forensic Storage and Technology Center (FSTC)

The Forensic Storage and Technology Center (FSTC) has available new lifts to raise passenger vehicles, light trucks and varied heavy trucks for complete access to the vehicle’s undercarriage for inspection.  For additional information, please contact John McShane at

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Shopper Suffers Injury In Store

Sterling Anthony, M.B.A. ::::

Case Synopsis: A shopper in the sports department of a major retailer took from a shelf a step-aerobic platform, placed the platform on the floor, and then stepped on the platform to test it. The platform slid from under her and she fell and sustained a cranial injury. The ensuing litigation against the manufacturer alleged that the product was unreasonably dangerous due to the way it was packaged and due to a failure-to-warn.

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The Importance of Clear, Concise and Conspicuous Signage

Tom J. Griffiths, ED.D. ::::

When accidents occur at swimming pools, water parks and beaches, there are usually two vital areas of omission from which lawsuits are born: 

  1. The failure to supervise, and/or
  2. The failure to warn. 
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