James R. Schmidt, Jr., Sr. Collision Reconstruction Engineer ::::
I love dash cam videos! Who am I kidding… I love all videos equally, surveillance included! Especially when they capture a crash!
Driving home from dinner on a Friday night, I encounter an accident scene with emergency vehicles present.
I don’t like to rubberneck, and as it turns out, I don’t need to… I have a dash cam! Me being a collision reconstruction engineer, I took the first opportunity I could to review the video afterward! Here’s what I have concluded:
A pickup truck rear-ended the white SUV.
This impact was measureable, and firmly planted the front of the white SUV into the rear of the dark-colored SUV. In non-technical terms, the pickup truck “blasted” the white SUV.
Given the severity of the first impact, as well as the debris pattern, fluid spill on the roadway, and the points of rest of the vehicles, it is evident that both SUVs were pushed a significant distance forward as a result of the pickup truck.
Presumably, the SUVs were slowing for, stopped at, or starting up from a stop when rear-ended, as there is a signalized intersection ahead. After impact, the pickup truck veered right and around the two SUVs as evidenced by fluid spill, ultimately coming to rest a further distance up the roadway.
The pickup truck appears to have been travelling too fast for conditions. And it also appears that the operator may have been DUI.
So, what have we learned? 1. When a collision reconstruction engineer at DJS Associates enjoys analyzing video evidence on their personal time, you can be certain that your case needs will be met with equal enthusiasm on their professional time, and 2. Don’t drink and drive!
James R. Schmidt, Jr., is a Senior Collision Reconstruction Engineer with DJS Associates and can be reached via email at experts@forensicDJS.com or by phone at 215-659-2010.