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Calendar - Event Details

Exponent and Vertex Team of Engineers and Experts for a Day of CLE Sessions
December 3, 2020
Time: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
To Learn More and to Register, Click Here

8 CLE Sessions to Choose From, Attend Any or All CLEs that Interest You For FREE!

8 General CLE Credits Approved

Morning Track:
Product Liability, Human Factors, Materials & Fire


8:00-8:50 am

Understanding Fires Using the Fire Tetrahedron, taught by Mike Cundy, Ph.D., PE, CFEI

This course will begin with an overview of the fundamentals of fire investigations as described in the National Fire Protection Association 921: Guide for Fire and Explosion Investigations. The fire tetrahedron (fuel, heat, oxidizing agent, and uninhibited chemical chain reactions) will be discussed in more detail, and examples will be given to assist in understanding their respective roles in thermal events.

9:00-9:50 am

Performance, Durability and Failure of Plastics in Building and Construction, taught by Manuel Garcia-Leiner, Ph.D., Michael Dimitriou, Ph.D., Jericho Moll, Ph.D.

The introduction of plastic materials into widespread use in the building and construction industry has resulted in products that are often lightweight, easy to install, and less expensive than their non-plastic counterparts. These attributes, among others, make plastic building materials an appealing option for contractors, architects, and designers. In this seminar, we will present several litigation case studies involving plastics in building and construction applications (e.g, decking, sealants, flooring, piping, windows, etc.) with focus on issues related to their formulation, manufacturing process, and other factors influencing their performance.


A Human Factors Approach to Understanding Warnings Effectiveness and Compliance, taught by Young Bui, Ph.D.

When it comes to product-related injuries, one common recommendation is that manufacturers warn users about all the potential risks associated with their product. While providing warnings may be well-intentioned, and oftentimes required, they are seldom effective at enhancing the safety of a product. In this presentation, we will discuss some of the science behind warning development and compliance. In doing so, we will introduce general human factors principles that influence the impact warnings may or may not have on product safety.

11:00-11:50 am

Engineering Analysis for Product Recall Decisions, taught by Kaitlin Spak, Ph.D., PE, and Alix de Pannemaecker, P.Eng.

Litigation often relies on engineering cause determination for an accident, but how do you know what the true cause of an event is? Learn how to identify direct, contributing, and root causes, and how technical experts applied these concepts in case studies for litigation support and corrective actions

Afternoon Track:
Construction and Property Claims


1:00-1:50 pm

Construction Schedule Delay Claims, taught by Ryan Phillips, PE and Ian Robinson, MSCE

Many legal claims require proof of delay via a critical-path-method (CPM) schedule analysis; however, reliability of available data varies from project to project and often dictates the best CPM method for calculating delay claims. Using recent case studies from Vertex’s project log, this course discusses constraints in data and the best CPM method for proving delays and resultant damages given such constraints.

2:00-2:50 pm

Defending Single Family Home Construction Defect Claims, taught by Jessica Stieber, Esq. and Paul Bennett, PE

With the decline in multi-family, or large single-family HOA, construction defect litigation in recent years there has been an increase in single-family home claims. This course focuses on tools for defending these claims. These claims can be challenging as often the defects and damages are not well defined. Often, the Plaintiff expert reports are poorly developed, or the Plaintiff’s expert is the contractor who finished or repaired the construction. Assigning damages and settlement values to these claims can be difficult as well as working with the insurance carrier to authorize a settlement.

3:00-3:50 pm

Concrete: A Primer, taught by Nathan P. Mayercsik, Ph.D., PE

Concrete has been used successfully for two millennia, yet problems still arise, leading to costly litigation. This course presents an overview of concrete as a material and issues to consider in construction defect disputes.

4:00-4:50 pm

Soil & Rock Sampling and Testing, taught by CJ Coccia, Ph.D., PE

A crash course on investigation options, sampling techniques, laboratory testing, and how these activities may assist in building movement investigations.

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