CDLA CLE Day

Colorado Defense Lawyers Association
December 2, 2021
Denver, Colorado

Exponent and Vertex will host the Colorado Defense Lawyers Association (CDLA) Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Day in Denver on December 2, 2021. The conference offers participants eight CLE sessions in two concurrent tracks. Track 1 will cover “Building, Roofing, and Construction” while Track 2 will feature “Root Cause, Utilities, and Accident Reconstruction.”

Four Exponent professionals will speak during Track 1, “Building, Roofing, and Construction.” The first speakers are Manuel Garcia-Leiner, Ph.D., Exponent senior manager, and Hilda Buss, Ph.D., Exponent senior associate, who will present “What’s in My Building Materials?” at 1:00 PM MT/12 PM PT. Their talk will address the widespread use of plastic building materials that has created light weight, easy to install, inexpensive, and aesthetically pleasant options for contractors, architects, and designers. These building materials encompass a wide variety of plastic/polymer formulations and are complex in their formulation, manufacturing process, and other factors, which all affect performance and failures. In this seminar, they will describe several examples (piping systems, coatings, etc.) and recommendations regarding the analysis and evaluation of plastics as building materials.

At 2:00 PM MT/1:00 PM PT, Nathan P. Mayercsik, Ph.D., P.E., Exponent managing engineer, will present “Commercial Roofing: Overview and Failure Studies.” Common commercial roof coverings include built-up roofing, modified bitumen, PVC, TPO, SPF, and metal. In Colorado, commercial roofs may be damaged by the deleterious effects of wind, snow, and hail. Roof membrane failures frequently initiate from a single component within the roof assembly, requiring careful cause-and-origin analysis when multiple root causes are proposed and contested. This presentation will provide a crash course in the different products and system assembly constructions common in the industry.

Exponent’s Julien Cohen-Waeber, Ph.D., P.E., P.G., C.E.G., managing engineer, will give the final presentation for Track 1: “Remote Sensing Technologies for Evaluating Structural Movement” at 4:00 PM MT/3:00 PM PT. Recent technological advancements in remote sensing have allowed unprecedented potential for evaluating the way civil infrastructure responds to environmental stressors such as human activity, natural hazards, and climate change. These advancements include familiar techniques such as aerial photo analysis, as well as novel technologies such as Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) or synthetic aperture radar interferometry (InSAR). Their use allows for a wide variety of applications and is particularly well-suited for detailed tracking and characterization of building and ground movement with exceptional precision and accuracy. This seminar will provide a review of the most prevalent technologies to date, including their benefits and limitations, through concrete examples of their application, including tracking building movement due to expansive soils.

Track 2, “Root Cause, Utilities, and Accident Reconstruction,” will feature six Exponent speakers. Shane Kennett, Ph.D., P.E., CWI, Exponent principal engineer and office director, and Ty Porter, Ph.D., P.E., Exponent senior engineer, will deliver the first presentation titled “An Engineers Guide to: ‘What Caused This?’” at 1:00 PM MT/12:00 PM PT. Their talk will address the following question: Litigation often relies on the engineering cause for an accident, but how do you know what the true cause is? Attendees will learn how to identify direct, contributing, and root causes, and how technical experts have applied these concepts in case studies for litigation support and corrective actions.

At 2:00 PM MT/1:00 PM PT, Rita Kirchhofer, Ph.D., P.E., CWI, Exponent managing engineer, will speak on “How Utilities are Mitigating Public Safety Risks.” Utilities operating electric transmission and distribution lines are under increased scrutiny from the public and regulators due to catastrophic public safety incidents and reliability issues related to failure of their assets. To address these concerns, new approaches for asset management strategies to mitigate public safety risks, wildfires, and improve grid reliability are being developed. This presentation will feature an overview of the innovations implemented by utilities that will set new industry standards.

Delivering the third presentation for Track 2, Casey Davis, Ph.D., Exponent senior associate, will discuss “Enhanced Inspections and Technology for Utility Asset Management” at 3:00 PM MT/2:00 PM PT. With the aging electrical infrastructure and the changing environmental conditions, the risk of catastrophic public safety incidents is increasing. To adapt to these conditions, the utility industry must develop new standards for inspections and maintenance of their power lines. Casey Davis will address this by providing an overview of new technology and methods for inspections and maintenance of power lines.

Finally, Jason R. Skiera, P.E., Exponent managing engineer, and Steven G. Como, P.E., Exponent senior engineer, will give the last talk for Track 2 “Modern Methods and Techniques in Accident Reconstruction to Document, Analyze, and Quantify Collision Severity Involving Motor-Vehicles and Micro-Mobility Devices” at 4:00 PM MT/3:00 PM PT. Although investigators have been reconstructing crashes for decades and the use of fundamental methodologies continues to apply, the tools utilized as part of an analysis have evolved over time. Today, approaches to documenting physical evidence, defining vehicle motion, and assessing crash severity often include the use of drones, laser scanners, photogrammetry, simulation, EDR analysis, and testing. Jason R. Skiera and Steven G. Como will discuss examples of use cases for these tools—as well as admissibility concerns—and will explore the testing of electric scooters utilizing Anthropomorphic Test Device (ATD) riders.

Additionally, Paul Bennett, P.E., CBIE, Exponent principal engineer and office director; David T. Burnett, P.E., CFPS, Exponent senior managing engineer; Michael D. Dimitriou, Ph.D., Exponent senior manager; Julie Li, Exponent managing scientist; Richard W. Vose, Jr., AIA, NCARB, LEED AP, Exponent managing architect; Kristen Hess, Ph.D., Exponent associate; and Maja Sagaser, Exponent associate, will be in attendance.

Exponent is proud to co-host the Colorado Defense Lawyers Association (CDLA) Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Day.

For more information, click here.

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