Forensic and investigative engineering involves the assessment of information from a wide variety of technical sources to determine causes of failure, prevent accidents or to optimise an engineering process. Examples of these sources include: materials research, metallurgical analysis, electronic and plant diary logs, human testimony, human factors analysis, engineering calculations, design and operational standards, Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s) and site inspections. Our capabilities and services include the ability and resources to capture and assess a wide variety of information from sources such as these.
The forensic engineering services that we provide enables lawyers and engineers to manage their cases in a way that crystallises important questions and if appropriate, provides technical information that can support their client’s objectives or implement cost effective solutions.
We provide in depth and detailed investigation of air accidents and incidents. Our capabilities include investigations involving a wide range of rotary and fixed wing aircraft types and may address both operational (flying) and engineering (forensic) aspects of an air accident.
Prosolve Ltd offers comprehensive air accident investigation services that comply with international investigation guidelines of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). We have a proven track record of investigating difficult and challenging assignments and command the respect of international authorities. We have succeeded in challenging the findings of official reports and have successfully defended individuals who have been wrongfully charged by New Zealand’s civil aviation regulator. We apply the comprehensive principles of air accident investigation to other investigation contexts wherever possible and appropriate.
Prosolve Ltd offers a comprehensive set of Health and Safety capabilities which emphasise worker participation and involvement. We take pride in offering workplace health and safety services that respond to the risks at hand, and which are inexpensive, minimalistic, compliant and practical. We believe in facilitating collaborative work processes which disarm confrontational responses.
An organisational accident or incident is a failure or deficiency due in part to problems with the system or organisation in which the problem occurs. These types of failures at first glance appear solely due to mistakes or oversight by individuals or single entities. However on deeper analyses, contributing factors from the wider system or organisation become apparent. The graph below illustrates how these failures developed in a slow drift-like manner.
Managing investigations can be challenging for both the client and the investigator, regardless of the objective and whether the context is blameful or non-blameful. Any type of management process is required to form goals, objectives and expected outcomes, but this is often difficult at the beginning of an investigation. While these may not always be formed until after the investigation has progressed, somehow the job still has to be managed.
We at Prosolve have learnt the value of managing such uncertainity through stage wise implementation of objectives and understanding the value of iteration, which is often also encountered during engineering design and development activities.
Root Cause Analysis (RCA) represents comprehensive investigation, assessment, evaluation and correction. All these are attributes which feature in the services that we provide. There are many types of investigative procedures used to carry out Root Cause Analysis and these are displayed graphically below :
Expert Determination provides an informal, speedy, cost effective way of resolving disputes, particularly those which are technically complex and which lend themselves to open investigation and determination by an expert with knowledge and experience about the matters in dispute.
The process of expert determination is suitable for parties who value their business relationships with each other and who wish to discourage an adversarial interaction as much as is possible without compromising on a settlement opportunity that an objective assessment of facts could offer.
During the course of our technical investigations, we have regularly been impressed at the extent to which people have been prepared to tell their story; authentically and truthfully in a way that they would not have agreed to in a formal court hearing or an adversarial context. With their story often came other helpful leads and technical information which contributed to a comprehensive result.
This has been the case in a variety of countries and ethnic cultures where we have led investigations. In many enquiries, the provision of information did not come without risk to the individual’s own personal future and yet the person still obliged.
Interacting with people in such a context requires skill and experience. Our offer of expert determination services in the construction, technology and aviation spheres is a natural extension of in-depth air crash investigation and engineering investigation services which is supported by training in Alternative Dispute Resolution.
The associates and staff of Prosolve Ltd are skilled and experienced in providing expert testimony in courts of law and other dispute resolution contexts such as international arbitration, mediation and conventional negotiation. This includes providing advice that would stand up to court scrutiny before a dispute develops and ripens.
We also provide litigation support to lawyers and clients who are contemplating or pursuing legal action. This can include a technical co-ordination role during the litigation process, should there be a requirement for other technical specialists to be sourced and co-ordinated.
Andrew McGregor is an industry leader in expert testimony. He has an on ongoing role in the Arbitrators and Mediator’s institute (AMINZ) training programme for expert witnesses. One of the main purposes of this programme is to train technical specialists to prepare and deliver expert testimony in formal court environments.
From time to time we choose to comment on high profile cases or issues, if we have concerns about the quality of technical information that is publicly reported by investigation agencies or other entities. Sometimes the invitation to comment or the comment itself is by another entity, but is based on information uncovered by our investigative work.
Prosolve Ltd is a consulting engineering practice specialising in forensic and investigative engineering services, including accident investigation. We offer these services in the industrial, safety and legal spheres, and have done so since 2001.
These services are underpinned with a rigorous background in international air accident investigation and a proven record in solving complex problems at the real engineering coalface. Our technical expertise, practical experience, technological resources, and extensive diagnostic and testing capabilities enable us to provide comprehensive failure analysis and cost effective solutions to the most challenging issues across a wide range of industries and contexts. We take pride in the collective expertise of our experienced associates and technology partners who look beyond the immediate and obvious questions and provide real insight into the difficult issues our clients face. It may seem a little immodest to claim that we go to the ends of the earth and the bottom of the ocean to find out what really happened, but the truth is, on some assignments that is exactly what we have done – literally; just ask us.
Andrew McGregor’s forensic work was invaluable in helping me to defend my innocence. His work was truly comprehensive and compelling; Not knowing why my plane crashed, but being certain that I had acted at all times beyond criticism, I hired Andrew McGregor to determine the cause of the crash and to help defend my innocence against the CAA who had charged me with the criminal offence of “Unnecessary endangerment”. Andrew proved that the crash was caused by a component fracture that had occurred in flight and before the inevitable crash on landing. Forensic science in real life that rivals anything ever shown on a TV who-dunnit. His evidence in court was dynamite. Brilliant! -Paul Jones, Commercial Pilot.