Accident Reconstruction

Shipwreck Accident Reconstruction

The causation and consequences of a shipwreck in an accident reconstruction animation

The phrase “Accident Reconstruction” typically paints the picture of two motor vehicles colliding into each other. However, accident reconstruction goes much further than that. One of our specialties is the recreation of any unintended disaster. 


This particular animation shows the causation and consequences of a shipwreck, where two enormous vessels collided.

For the two-whistle pass to be acknowledged by the tugboat, they would have known that the tanker was in an overtaking position. The two long whistles means that the barge was planning to leave the tugboat on the starboard side. Acknowledgment was as good as saying they were out of the way.

As is clearly shown in the animation, the tugboat was badly damaged due to the enormously powerful hit. A fully loaded barge can weigh up to 2000 tons, which is equivalent to over 300 male African Elephants. Traveling at 20 knots puts the momentum of this ship at over 18 million newtons. Such a force cannot be directed lightly.

These damages were a result of negligence. If it weren’t for the animation, it would be significantly more challenging to explain to the jury how negligent behavior led to such an incident. 

Accident Reconstruction

Accident reconstruction is pivotal in discerning causation. More often than not, the plaintiff and defendant disagree on the events that led up to an incident. There are a few ways to reconcile potential differences, but the strategy you use will depend on a variety of factors.  Some of these are: what happened, whether or not it was avoidable, what the opposition is willing to admit, what experts you’re able to retain, and the evidence your experts are able to find during discovery. With these in mind, it’s possible to create an animation that depicts the scene of the incident with incredible precision.

Legal Animation for Accident Reconstruction

You may ask why a legal animation would be helpful when reconstructing an incident. The answer is simple. Animations demonstrate liability by showing that a collision could have been avoided if a certain party avoided negligent behavior. For example, without the use of a visual aid, it would be challenging to depict to a jury the exact location of a vehicle in reference to a place they might have never been. 

Oftentimes, we find that the facts in a case are complex and challenging to understand for the average person. In a society that is inundated with visual media, it’s critical to be able to teach them the ins and outs of a situation in a way that they’ll be able to understand. If you’ve heard somebody say “I’d have to see it to believe it,” then you know the extraordinary value of providing a visual display for the jury in order for them to understand. 

Mark Dombroff says it best: “The varied uses of courtroom visual aids are limited only by your imagination. Legal graphic consultants and artists can be an important part of your team, in helping you highlight salient points, increase comprehension, illustrate the unknown and hard-to-imagine, permit audiences to digest large amounts of data quickly and easily, increase critical events in an evidentiary chain, add dramatic effect [and] make your presentation effective.”

Legal Graphics Help Jurors Decide

Jurors are more likely to sympathize with your client’s injuries when they see that the defendant’s actions were blatantly negligent. Adjusting points of view allows jurors to evaluate a driver’s actions from multiple angles. We work with such precision that our animations have actually been used as substantive evidence, not just demonstrative. 

In our extensive experience developing crash reconstruction animations, we’ve done trucking collisions, multi-vehicle collisions, low-speed spine injuries, motorcycle collisions, and many other kinds of incidents. We perform FARO scanning, topographical mapping, forensic analysis, and nighttime visibility studies to determine the precise circumstances under which the incident occurred. 

Fox Animation Engineering - Industry Leader for Legal Graphics

Our industry-leading legal graphics have been used by some of the top attorneys in the country. We’re able to achieve this level of excellence because our engineers are the animators. We have certified medical illustrators, medical practitioners, and 3D modeling engineers that collaborate together to create our state-of-the-art animations.  

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