Commercial Vehicle Accidents

The motion of a commercial motor vehicle can be affected by a number of issues.


Reconstruction of an accident involving a commercial motor vehicle, or tractor-trailer, can quickly become a very complex matter. The motion of a commercial motor vehicle can be affected by a number of issues including vehicular geometry, cargo loading, high cross winds, and the condition of the brakes and tires. The pure size and weight of the vehicles will limit braking capabilities and maneuverability in an emergency situation.

The height of commercial motor vehicles often leads to situations of semi truck underride in which the front of a passenger vehicle passes underneath the rear or side of a trailer. As the car continues, impact occurs between the bottom of the trailer and the passenger compartment of the car. Due to the geometry of the collision, accidents involving semi truck underride are often fatal.

Publications List

The experts at Knott Laboratory have been published in many engineering journals. While most of these essays are quite detailed, these short abstracts express a summary of the overall papers that were published.

An Overview of Heavy Trucks/Buses Braking Performance

Journal of the National Academy of Forensic Engineers
June 1991

Forensic Engineering Use of Computer Animation and Graphics

Journal of the National Academy of Forensic Engineers
December, 2006

A Method for Determining and Presenting Driver Visibility in Commercial Vehicles

Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) 2007-01-4232
2007

Wind Effects on Dynamic Stability of Tractor Trailers in Winter Conditions

Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) 2009-01-2915
October, 2009

Danger! Falling Cargo, The Importance of Proper and Safe Securement of Your Load

The Lawyer’s LogBook, Vol. 1, No. 1
Apr. - May 2011

Fatigued Drivers and Consequences

The Lawyer’s LogBook, Vol. 1, No. 5
2012

Forensic Engineering Analysis of Trucking Accidents and Regulations

Journal of the National Academy of Forensic Engineers
December, 2012

Newest Trends in Accident Reconstruction

The Lawyer’s LogBook, Vol. 2, No. 5
2013

Trucking Accidents and Regulations

The Lawyer’s LogBook, Vol. 3, No. 4
Oct. – Nov. 2013

The Nuts and Bolts of Cargo Loading and Securement Cases

The Lawyer’s LogBook, Vol. 4., No. 1
Apr. - May 2014

Experts in the Field

Our forensic engineers are experts in accident reconstruction, failure analysis and cause & origin. Our forensic engineers work directly with our in-house animation department to create state-of-the-art forensic animations for use in court, arbitration, mediation or settlement negotiations.

Richard M. Ziernicki, Ph.D., P.E., DFE

President & CEO, Principal Mechanical Engineer

(303) 925-1900
rziernicki@knottlab.com

Steve D. Knapp, P.E., CFEI, CVFI

Senior Engineer

(303) 925-1900
sknapp@knottlab.com

William H. Pierce, P.E.

Manager, Mechanical Engineering

(303) 925-1900
wpierce@knottlab.com

Ricky L. Nguyen, M.S., P.E.

Senior Engineer

(303) 925-1900
rnguyen@knottlab.com

David C. Neidig, B.Sc.

Engineer

303-925-1900
dneidig@knottlab.com

Henry “Hank” V. Mowry, P.E., CFEI

Senior Engineer

303-925-1900
hmowry@knottlab.com

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Since 1982, Knott Laboratory has been providing comprehensive forensic engineering and computer animation services to reconstruct accidents.

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