Real World Experience: Our experts possess real world experience in their respective fields. Having poured foundations and framed complicated roofs, to developing a processes for high temperature aerospace instrument manufacturing, our experts have gotten their hands dirty throughout their careers. There is no substitute for real world experience, period.
Training and Support: We provide our experts with necessary training and support in the profession of being effective expert witnesses. Resources from some of the top expert witness trainers are provided in report writing, deposition skills, cross examination skills and other important aspects of being an effective expert witness.
Technical Library: An extensive resource library of resources is maintained and provided to our experts which includes historical building codes, industry standards, published construction cost estimating guides and a wide array of other necessary resources.
Accountability: D.A. Doddridge and Associates, Inc. is invested in their experts and takes the time and provides support as necessary for each expert. In the unforeseen circumstance where an expert is unable to complete an assignment, we will make every attempt to find a suitable replacement.
- Slip, Trip and Fall
- Stairways/Building Entrances
- Construction Accidents/OSHA
- Building Codes
- Construction Estimating/Forensic Construction Cost Analysis
- Construction Disputes/Standards of Care
- Forensic Engineering
- Mechanical Engineering
- Structural Failures
- Building Codes
- Slip, Trip and Fall
- Stairways/Building Entrances
- Building and Home Inspections
- Electrical Engineering
- Fire Loss
D.A. Doddridge and Associates, Inc. employs fully vetted and experienced experts in the architectural, building, construction, design and engineering forensics fields.
We serve plaintiff and defense attorneys throughout the Northeast portion of the country, including; New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maine, Vermont and New Hampshire.
The experts at D.A. Doddridge and Associates, Inc. are highly trained, educated and experienced construction professionals with expertise in construction safety, standards of care, construction cost estimating, building codes, architecture and engineering.
Our expert opinions are based on our experience, training, and education and by researching local, state and federal codes, industry standards, and generally accepted industry practices.
Our experts possess the following attributes:
- Qualifications; Through real world, hands-on experience
- Credibility; Proven in our industries, recognized achievement
- Availability; Recognition of client's schedules
- Preparation; A critical key to a successful outcome
- Communication; Required written and oral skills necessary to effectively educate
- Testifying Skills; By understanding the goals of each party
- Training; Education, degrees, licensing and certifications
- Knowledge; Specific knowledge related to each case
- Teaching; Written publications, CLE/CEU presentation, classroom instruction
- Balance; Plaintiff and defense representation
- Honors; Academic achievement and peer recognition
- Consistency; In current and past opinions
- Appearance; Reflective of professional expectations
- Deadlines; Adherence to required imposing deadlines
- Interest; Continuing to strive for knowledge of the litigation process
D.A. Doddridge & Associates, Inc. provides the following technical assistance to both plaintiff and defense attorneys:
- Expert witness testimony - both plaintiff and defense attorneys
- Site inspection, if appropriate, with attorney(s) and/or injured party of:
- Floor surface
- Floor matting and rugs
- Floor cleaning products, methods, coatings and cleaning schedule
- Stairs, steps and escalators
- Ladders and scaffolding
- Sidewalks, parking lots, curbs and ramps
- Bathtubs, showers and pool decks
- Take photographs and measurements
- Testing for slip resistance of walking surface
- Adequacy of lighting
- 3D animations used for accident reconstruction for use as demonstratives at trial
- Cite defective or hazardous conditions
- Determine clear, irrefutable culpability
- Analysis of case facts of case from a technical perspective
- Building code interpretations, compliance and violations
- Review all documentation and testimony
- Preparation of questions during discovery
- Preparation of defensible reports
- Reconstruction of accident scene
- ADA non-compliance
- OSHA Walking and Working Surface regulations
- Floor surface
Many premises liability cases involve walking surfaces that contain a change in elevation, such as a stairway, ramp or a single step. Even though the existence of a stairway sometimes may seem obvious and therefore not a hazard, there are often times other less obvious hazards that exist. The same conditions may also exist within a ramp, a curb ramp or a single step.
Things like lack of dimensional uniformity, poor lighting or lack of a visual cue indicating a change in elevation can be contributing factors to a hazardous condition.
Mr. Doddridge has personally constructed and inspected hundreds and hundreds of stairways in his professional career. Such experience has led to his status as a stairway expert and he has therefore handled numerous cases for both plaintiff and defense attorneys involving stairways, ramps, curb ramps and single steps.
Such hazards can include the following;
- Lack of a visual cue due to use of the same floor covering materials on each adjacent elevation
- Dimensional uniformity issues within a stairway, as building codes dictate
- Poor lighting quality
- Poorly placed or improperly installed handrails
- Slippery stair treads
- Lack of a visual cue on a curb or single step indicating a change in elevation
A construction site is a very fast-moving and dangerous environment, in both residential and commercial construction projects, where significant hazards abound.
Gravity does not discriminate. Twenty feet is 20 feet whether a worker is building a single family free-standing home or a large commercial building.
The experts at D.A. Doddridge & Associates, Inc. have collectively spent well over 100 years working on construction sites and are all too familiar with the hazardous conditions that exist. It is this level of experience that provides us with the irrefutable ability to analyze and opine on nearly all types of construction accidents.
We use forensically recognized laser scanning and photogrammetry techniques and equipment to accurately reconstruct a 3D image of the building for use in forensically animating the actual construction accident for use as a demonstration at trial.
Some examples of common construction accidents are
- Falls from elevated positions, including scaffolding and roofs
- Electrocution incidents
- Power tool accidents
- Falling objects
- Personal protective equipment
- Ladder use and placement
- Heavy equipment striking a worker
As part of our construction accident investigations, we will
- Utilize forensically recognized animated accident reconstruction techniques
- Establish and cite responsibility of contractor, subcontractors, and any other supervisory personnel
- Review OSHA standards, citations and regulations
- Research state specific industrial codes and regulations
- Apply New York Labor Law 240 and New York Labor Law 241(6), where applicable
Most construction projects are complicated and go far beyond the practical knowledge of a homeowner or building owner. Contractors know this and sometimes they will take full advantage of their customer’s naiveté by cutting corners, using substandard or lesser quality substituted building materials, intentionally leaving known items out of the contract, overcharging for changes or work performed to date and “front-loading” the contract so as to receive the bulk of the contract early in the project.
Oftentimes this results in the firing of the contractor or the abandonment of the project by the contractor. This is where D.A. Doddridge & Associates, Inc. is sometimes called upon to provide an expert opinion.
In construction dispute cases, we will
- Review all documentation, including contract, blueprints, and punch lists
- Document the condition of the project before being taken over by another contractor, thus eliminating the spoliation of evidence.
- Review correspondence and allegations between parties
- Conduct an on-site evaluation of the issues
- Estimate fair and reasonable value of completed work, including remedial requirements for such work
- Estimate the “cost-to-cure” defective workmanship and remaining costs to complete the work
- Determine professional liability
- Establish local, state and federal code compliance
- Determine conformance with industry standards and codes
- Opine on quality of workmanship and issue work product report
- Determine non-compliance with contract and/or construction documents
- Assess impact on construction schedule
- Provide technical assistance throughout all stages of litigation
- Find overcharges by contractor(s)
Mr. Doddridge’s father, Donald A. Doddridge practically ‘invented’ the home inspection industry in the 1970’s. His son David worked with his father in the building inspection and construction industries.
A properly conducted building inspection, whether for a single family home or a commercial property, is critical to the due diligence process of purchasing a property.
The building inspection industry is fraught with poorly trained “fly by night” individuals who have little or no experience prior to becoming a home or building inspector. These individuals are often recommended by real estate agents with the knowledge that “their inspector” is competent and sure to give an accurate opinion of the condition of the property.
The experts at D.A. Doddridge & Associates, Inc. can assist in the pursuit of a legal claim against a home or building inspector, or in defense of an inspector by
- Reviewing all legal and other documentation and communications
- Reviewing the inspection report
- Verifying inspector’s licensing and insurance coverage as required by law
- Conducting site inspection, if required
- Determining breaches of industry standards of practice
- Citing errors and omissions
- Estimating repair, replacement, or reconstruction costs
- Issuing work product report
- If you or your client is a home or building inspector who is being sued for negligence or involved in a frivolous law suit, we are also experienced in defending home and building inspectors.
Analyzing the defects within a building envelope (walls, roof, door & window assemblies) is much like a medical doctor analyzing what is wrong with a patient.
First you must find out what the symptoms are and form a hypothesis. Next you must test your hypothesis in order to prove your theory. Sometimes testing must be done more than once in order to properly diagnose the problem, and prove your theory.
Once the hypothesis has been proven and the problems properly diagnosed, a remedial plan must then be drafted and construction documents prepared in order to proceed with fixing the problem(s).
The experts at D.A. Doddridge and Associates, Inc. utilize scientific diagnostic equipment and techniques that are forensically recognized as reliable methods and principles of building envelope failure analysis. Mr. Doddridge is a Certified Building Envelope Inspector under the Building Envelope Science Institute and has been trained specifically in the “science” of building envelopes.
Often the cost of litigation of a major building envelope failure can cost more than the cost of remediation. Litigation prevention is therefore oftentimes the most desirable approach. The experts at D.A. Doddridge & Associates, Inc. can assist in diagnosing and fixing a building envelope problem by
- Identifying building envelope and building façade defects
- Opining on quality of workmanship
- Drafting a remedial plan
- Assisting in choosing remedial contractor
- Owners representation during the remedial process
- Using of state-of-the-art elevated camera systems for documentation and visual inspection purposes
A construction site is a very fast moving environment. After a worker is injured and has had time to recover from their injuries and engage an attorney, you can rest assured that most, if not all evidence, has been spoiled or eliminated.
For this reason we offer our clients forensic animation services for use as demonstratives at trial. These services include
- Use of forensically recognized, high-end laser scanners and photogrammetry techniques to scan the exterior or interior of the building (if applicable) with tremendous accuracy
- Construction of an animated, forensically recognized and accurate 3D video reenactment of the accident
- Animations to be used at trial for demonstrative purposes
- In depth review of the file, witness statements and depositions in order to accurately interpret the actual event
- An experienced construction safety expert in charge of the animated accident reconstruction efforts, who is also available for testimony at trial, makes for an invaluable resource.
Commercial and residential building codes can be very complicated. Aside from building codes there is also often the necessity to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines (ADA/AG).
Our experts are highly experienced in building codes and the requirements of ADA/AG guidelines and we have assisted attorneys in numerous code related cases regarding these codes. Our experts have been designing, constructing and inspecting buildings that involve building codes and ADA/AG codes for many years and therefore we are well equipped and prepared to offer our opinions on
- Building code compliance
- Determination of which building codes apply
- “Grandfathering” of building codes
- Compliance with ADA/AG guidelines related to commercial locations
- State mandated accessibility codes