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Basics on Forensic Engineering - Part II

Ruben A. Gomez, P.E.

Course Outline

On this Part II the reader will uncover the necessary skills and personality traits that a practicing engineer must have in order to re-orient his career and become an accomplish forensic engineer. Further, he shows the path to become an expert witness, considered to be the culmination and highest challenge of the career, and in doing so, how to surf in Court and how to defend himself from and against the frequent verbal assailment, being the favorite strategy of plaintiff’s attorneys.

This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.

Learning Objective

After completing these Parts I and II, the reader will accomplish the following objectives:

Intended Audience

This course is intended for engineers of all disciplines, architects and/or general contractors.

Benefit for Attendee

Attendees will also be able to assess if they are suitable or have the character and personality to fit into the shoes of a forensic engineer, architect or contractor. They will be able to determine if they have the endurance and the fortitude of character to stand direct attacks against their professional character and personal standing.

Course Introduction

For centuries physicians had an unwritten and tacit monopoly of the popular perception of forensic work. The public always viewed the term as linked to the handling and examination of dead bodies to determine the cause(s) of death. But that is no longer the case, now every profession or occupation has its own section of forensic sciences and engineering is not an exception to that rule. Therefore, the forensic engineer is defined as the professional who examines, investigates and analyses the engineering aspects of a legal problem.

Course Content

The course content is contained in the following PDF file:

Basics on Forensic Engineering - Part II

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Course Summary

This course consists of a comprehensive abstraction of what forensic engineering is, how it is defined, how to be operational and what are the necessary skills for someone who is interested in becoming part of the profession. It also describes the role of the forensic engineer as an expert witness and how to behave in Court, as well as which the pitfalls are, and what are the possible reasons for failure during the daily practice.

A case history is discussed where the main problem was a slip and fall allegedly caused by the claimant stepping on a wet floor in the kitchen of his own house. The circumstances of the event are discussed in detail along the narrative of the case.

Related Links and References

For additional related technical information on this subject we recommend the latest edition of:

Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.


Once you finish studying the above course content, you need to take a quiz to obtain the PDH credits.

Take a Quiz

DISCLAIMER: The materials contained in the online course are not intended as a representation or warranty on the part of PDH Center or any other person/organization named herein. The materials are for general information only. They are not a substitute for competent professional advice. Application of this information to a specific project should be reviewed by a registered architect and/or professional engineer/surveyor. Anyone making use of the information set forth herein does so at their own risk and assumes any and all resulting liability arising therefrom.