We are excited to share our expertise and demonstrate how RETTEW’s services can help you minimize project delays and change orders and reduce liability. We’ll also highlight some of our people so you can be sure you are getting the best in the business when you work with RETTEW.

Experts Help Make the Case Rock-Tight!

When legal disputes arise, an expert witness is often needed. According to federal rules of evidence, an expert witness provides “reasoning which can be mastered only by specialists in the field.” The job of an expert witness is to make complicated arguments simple. Experts can explain highly technical and sometimes subtle issues to jurors, mediators, hearing boards or judges, who—while smart and perhaps expert in their chosen field—do not have the knowledge and experience to make informed decisions using facts about an unfamiliar issue.

RETTEW has federal and state court-qualified experts from a wide range of disciplines, including:

  • Health, Safety, and Environment
  • Geophysics/Geosciences
  • Transportation
  • Municipal/Civil
  • Geotechnical
  • Utility Engineering
  • Environmental/Natural Sciences
  • Surveying.

Our experts have the superior credentials, years—sometimes decades—of experience, and communication skills to draw and present firm conclusions supported by clear and concise explanations of complicated situations.

RETTEW Makes a Case

A family was on their trip of a lifetime to an exotic location abroad when tragedy struck. While they were hiking, a room-sized rock broke free from a scenic cliff above and struck and killed one of them. The survivors sued the travel agency that designed the trip, saying the agency should not have sent them to this dangerous spot. As evidence that the danger should have been known, the family’s attorneys harvested (from social media) accounts and videos of other rockfalls in the region. However, careful inspection of the clifftop by a RETTEW engineering geologist revealed evidence of unpermitted construction just back from the edge of the cliff where the rockfall originated. There were signs of rock excavation by picks or other hand tools, and several lengths of rebar had been driven into the rock. This activity is what loosened the rock and directly led to its fall and the tragic death of the hiker.

While the opposing side attempted to cast the accident spot as a known trail, this particular location was not at natural risk for a rockfall. Instead, it was a terrible mistake and illicit activity by some still-anonymous person of which the travel agency could have had no prior knowledge. The travel agency’s attorneys submitted RETTEW’s findings to opposing attorneys, and the lawsuit promptly settled. Avoiding court saved the travel agency many thousands of dollars in expert and attorney fees and stopped a potential multi-million-dollar judgement for the survivors.

Meet Tim Bechtel

Senior Project Manager

Tim loves a challenge, and when serving as an expert witness, it really puts him to the test. He says for every expert job he does, he is driven to relearn in detail some aspect of geology or geophysics such that no opposing expert can possibly know more than he does. Once he was analyzing a device that was in use in South America at the time and was intended for landmine detection. Tim discovered the device was a total scam and could not possibly detect landmines. Wow!

When not figuring out how to be the smartest guy in the room, Tim loves making maps, which is very fitting, as he’s traveled the world over once or twice. He enjoys watching nature and being active. In fact, one of his goals is to be like his 89-year-old mother, who still swims a half-mile in the ocean every day. We love having Tim as part of the RETTEW family and wish him a long, healthy life like his mom. It shouldn’t be too hard for Tim to reach his long-life goal; he brushes his teeth at least six times a day! One of those experts we were talking about before says good dental care lowers your mortality risk by 46% . . . long live this eccentric geophysicist!