Bradley Rutledge is a member of MEA’s Injury Biomechanics group in Los Angeles. He conducts biomechanical analyses to assess body motion and injury mechanics in motor vehicle collisions, slips, trips and falls, and other injury producing events. Brad uses engineering principles and data from scientific literature to analyze medical evidence and to evaluate questions about liability and injury causation. He can also look at whether changing a feature of an event, such as adding a seatbelt or a walkway defect, would have affected the risk of injury or not.

Brad holds Bachelor and Master degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Michigan State University. During his time at MSU, Brad conducted research on neck movement in people with and without neck pain, studied human walking mechanics, evaluated biomechanical devices, and helped to develop and teach engineering courses. He is registered as a Professional Engineer in California and has testified in court as an expert witness.

Brad is leading MEA’s ongoing research in using friction measuring machines, called tribometers, to evaluate the safety of walkway surfaces for slip and fall analysis. “We are focused on how we, as experts, can quantify the friction of a walkway surface and correlate that to a slip and fall,” he explains. Brad is an active member of the ASTM International F13 Committee on Pedestrian/Walkway Safety and Footwear, and is the current Vice Chair of the Research Subcommittee. He has conducted several slip and fall studies including human volunteer slip tests and tribometer evaluations.

areas of specialization

  1. Injury mechanics
  2. Slip, trip and fall analyses
  3. Premises liability
  4. Motor vehicle collision injuries
  5. Seat belt effectiveness
  6. Sports injuries

education

  1. Master of Science, Mechanical Engineering, Michigan State University, Michigan, 2011.
  2. Bachelor of Science, Mechanical Engineering (Biomechanics), Michigan State University, Michigan, 2008.

professional status

  1. Registered Professional Engineer, State of California, since 2014. License Number M37045.
  2. Certified Playground Safety Inspector, since 2017. Certification Number 40149-1220.
  3. Certified XL Tribometrist, since 2016. Certification Number 1610631.

professional associations

  1. American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), since 2013
  2. ASTM International F13 – Pedestrian/Walkway Safety and Footwear voting committee member, since 2015
  3. Vice Chair – ASTM International F13.40 Research Subcommittee, since 2018
  4. California Park & Recreation Society, since 2017
  5. Gait and Clinical Movement Analysis Society (GCMAS), since 2011
  6. Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), since 2016

Scholarly Activities

  1. Reviewer, Gait and Clinical Movement Analysis Society (GCMAS) Conference
  2. Reviewer, International Journal of Crashworthiness
  3. Reviewer, Journal of the National Academy of Forensic Engineers

Professional Experience

  1. MEA Forensic Engineers & Scientists
    Biomechanical Engineer, January 2012 to present

    Conducts accident reconstruction and biomechanical analyses to assess injury causation in cases involving automobile collisions, slip/trip and fall, and other injury-producing events. Performs assessments of loads applied to the body, injury mechanics, and the relationship between the applied loads and the injury. Performs analyses on occupant kinematics, seat belt use and effectiveness, and slip/trip and fall potential and kinematics. Conducts research on biomechanics of injury, staged crash tests, occupant kinematics, and tribometer performance for slip and fall investigations.

Teaching Experience

  1. Introduction to Engineering Design, Michigan State University
    Graduate Teaching Assistant, January 2010 to December 2011

    Responsible for teaching two lab sections per semester (30-40 students/section) for four semesters requiring the development of weekly 1 hour and 50 minute lab lecture according to the weekly course curriculum. Taught technical writing skills, the engineering design process, professional communication, and team management. Primary developer of two final projects involving the student-based construction and analysis of solar water heater and thermal insulator devices, including: the derivation of necessary equations based upon thermodynamic and heat transfer principals, development of an Excel file that automated the calculations, refinements of the overall project proposal, and development of project checkpoint and report objectives. Assisted in the development of course assignments and their associated documentation.Became proficient in Lego Mindstorm NXT hardware and software, assisting students and undergraduate mentors in the construction and programming of robots to complete project-defined tasks. Responsible for grading all student laboratory work, accounting for 65%-80% of the entire course grade.

  2. Computer Assisted Design of Thermal Systems, Michigan State University
    Graduate Teaching Assistant, August 2009 to December 2009

    Analyzed, refined, and debugged pre-developed MATLAB scripts and Excel workbook analyses provided to students for computational analysis of thermal systems. Developed MATLAB scripts and Excel workbook analyses in order to refine my ability in teaching students those skills. Held weekly office hours, assisting students in computational analyses as pertaining to manipulation of numerical and graphical data, as well as modeling, designing, selection, and optimization of turbomachinery and large thermal systems. Responsible for grading students’ project output results and in-class quizzes.

  3. Mechanical Design II, Michigan State University
    Graduate Teaching Assistant, May 2009 to August 2009

    Researched possible student design competition concepts to provide a challenging yet capable project that the students would be able to complete in a short summer semester. Generated an original student design competition in which students had to design a device to traverse a horizontal section of PVC piping and stop within a designated region in the fastest time, simulating an external pipe-inspecting robot. Created the guidelines for the competition including rules and regulations, course specifications, and grading criteria. Instructed two full class lectures reviewing strength of materials, statics, and the engineering design process. Held weekly office hours to assist in coursework and design projects. Responsible for grading all students’ homework assignments, quizzes, and the final design competition.

  4. Mechanics of Deformable Solids, Michigan State University
    Graduate Teaching Assistant, January 2009 to May 2009

    Instructed 21 undergraduate students in a laboratory setting according to a specified curriculum. Developed weekly lessons, reviewing topics that paralleled the course content including tension, compression, and shear stresses, strain, torsion, beam theory, combined stresses, Mohr’s circles, and column buckling. Responsible for students’ proper use and understanding of laboratory equipment and procedures. Taught students the proper technique for technical writing including formatting, preparation, methods and research, and the appropriate way to convey results and conclusions. Graded weekly laboratory reports.

Research Activities

  1. Biomechanical Design Research Laboratory (BDRL), Michigan State University
    Graduate Research Assistant, January 2009 to December 2011

    Ongoing research of cervical spine motion and dysfunction, as well as a clinical cervical spine diagnostic and treatment technique, through three-dimensional dynamic kinematic data obtained using a motion capture system. Worked with physicians to conduct biomechanics based research on assessment of the cervical spine for individuals with and without pain. Organized and implemented multiple human-based studies. Investigated the use of new technology in the form of force-sensing gloves for clinical based assessments of the cervical spine. Assisted in the testing of a Sage Medical, Inc. pressure-relieving heel protector in comparison to competitive products through pressure mapping (Tekscan). Analyzed pediatric gait through 3D motion tracking and application of modal analysis through proper complex orthogonal decomposition. Managed over 10 undergraduates in the BDRL overseeing data analysis, human testing, device design and construction, and understanding of clinical implications.

  2. Biomechanical Design Research Laboratory (BDRL), Michigan State University
    Undergraduate Research Assistant, May 2008 to December 2008

    Analyzed data acquired on cervical spine lateral flexion for multiple investigations including identification of an unintended therapeutic effect observed within testing trials and the effects of manual treatment on individuals with neck pain. Researched peer-reviewed journals for methods and results pertaining to analysis of cervical spine dysfunction. Conducted an inter-disciplinary study with osteopathic physicians to quantify the effects of manual manipulative therapy on individuals with cervical dysfunction. Collaborated in the construction and development of a reflexology device for a study in collaboration with the Michigan State University College of Nursing. Developed, constructed, and analyzed the biomechanical aspects of a robotic assisted-walking device for the elderly.

  3. Center For Musculoskeletal Research, University of Tennessee-Knoxville
    Undergraduate Research Assistant, May 2007 to August 2007

    Collaborated with a PhD student in developing a forward dynamic musculoskeletal model of human gait through MATLAB’s Simulink/SimMechanics software. Analyzed the capabilities of the developed model for accuracy and future improvements. Researched musculoskeletal dynamics, specifically focusing on the knee and human gait.

Awards

  1. Received $5,000 in funding from the College of Osteopathic Medicine to study the motion effects of manual manipulation on cervical lateral flexion.
  2. Graduate Research and Teaching Assistantships for nine semesters from 2009 to 2011.
  3. As a Graduate Teaching Assistant, had a student-team place first at Engineering Design Day for EGR 100 Outstanding Prototype and Poster Award in Spring 2011 and a team place second in Fall 2010.
  4. Recognized as a “Learning Leader” from the Department of Residence Life in the Spring 2011 semester with nominations from one or more on-campus resident hall students (each student only able to mention one person) for being someone who “stimulated them to think, reflect, connect ideas, explore knowledge and become excited about learning.”

research publications

This list is a selection of publications authored by this expert. For a more complete list, please contact their project coordinator.

Lectures & Presentations

  1. June 15, 2017 – Effect of Contaminant Film Thickness on Tribometer Measurements, Panel Session 3: Current Issues in Tribometer Use and Validity. Slips, Trips, and Falls International Conference 2017. Toronto, ON.
  2. January 30, 2017 – Film Thickness and Other Factors that Affect Tribometer Measurements. Workshop on the Multifactorial Analysis of Slip and Fall Events: Implications on Forensic & Safety Professionals. West Conshohocken, PA.
  3. November 10, 2016 – Forensic engineering and injury biomechanics. West Valley College, Saratoga, CA.
  4. November 10, 2016 – Forensic engineering and injury biomechanics. San Jose City College, San Jose, CA.
  5. October 7, 2016 – Biomechanics and injury causation in motor vehicle collisions. MEA Live Crash Course Seminar, Laguna Hills, CA.

Training & Professional Development

  1. January 22, 2018 – ASTM Standards Development Meeting of Committee F13 – Pedestrian/Walkway Safety and Footwear, New Orleans, LA.
  2. November 7-8, 2017 – Playground Safety Inspector Certification Course, Riverside, CA.
  3. June 15-16, 2017 – Slips, Trips, and Falls International Conference 2017, Toronto, ON.
  4. June 14, 2017 – ASTM Standards Development Meeting of Committee F13 – Pedestrian/Walkway Safety and Footwear, Toronto, ON.
  5. June 5-8, 2017 – 25th International Technical Conference on the Enhanced Safety of Vehicles (ESV), Detroit, MI.
  6. February 21, 2017 – California Residential Code, HalfMoon Education Inc., Irvine, CA.
  7. January 31, 2017 – ASTM Standards Development Meeting of Committee F13 – Pedestrian/Walkway Safety and Footwear, West Conshohocken, PA.
  8. January 30, 2017 – Workshop on the Multifactorial Analysis of Slip and Fall Events: Implications on Forensic & Safety Professionals, West Conshohocken, PA.
  9. January 25, 2017 – Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety in Parking Facilities, Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) webinar.
  10. January 19, 2017 – California Building Code, HalfMoon Education Inc., San Diego, CA.
  11. October 12, 2016 – CXLT Certification Program, San Diego, CA.
  12. June 27-28, 2016 – ASTM Standards Development Meeting of Committee F13 – Pedestrian/Walkway Safety and Footwear, Chicago, IL.
  13. March 30, 2016 – Designing for Accessibility under ADA Standards and the CBC, HalfMoon Education Inc., Irvine, CA.
  14. March 15-17, 2016 – Assessing Walkway Safety per ASTM F2948-13: Standard Guide for Walkway Auditor Qualifications, Frisco, TX.
  15. January 25-26, 2016 – ASTM Standards Development Meeting of Committee F13 – Pedestrian/Walkway Safety and Footwear, San Antonio, TX.
  16. July 22, 2015 – PC Crash 10.1 Workshop.
  17. July 6, 2015 – Building Code Overview, Ontario Society of Professional Engineers, Mississauga, ON.
  18. June 17, 2015 – FORCON International Walkway Auditor Training Course: ASTM F2948, Anaheim, CA.
  19. June 15-16, 2015 – ASTM Standards Development Meetings of Committee F13 – Pedestrian/Walkway Safety and Footwear, Anaheim, CA.
  20. May 20-21, 2015 – Commanding Presence Workshop, Mission Viejo, CA.
  21. December 15, 2014 – Rail Safety Training Course, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Los Angeles, CA.
  22. November 9, 2014 – 42nd International Workshop on Human Subjects for Biomechanical Research, San Diego, CA.
  23. July 6-11, 2014 – 7th World Congress of Biomechanics (WCB), Boston, MA.
  24. June 26-29, 2013 – ASME Summer Bioengineering Conference, Sunriver, OR.
  25. October 29-31, 2012 – 56th STAPP Car Crash Conference, Savannah, GA.
  26. October 28, 2012 – 40th International Workshop on Human Subjects for Biomechanical Research, Savannah, GA.
  27. July 17-20, 2012 – PC Crash Workshop, Vancouver, BC.
  28. May 13-15, 2012 – 8th Annual Biomechanics Symposium, The Ohio State University.
  29. May 9-12, 2012 – Gait and Clinical Movement Analysis Society Annual Conference, Grand Rapids, MI.
  30. August 18-21, 2010 – The 34th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Biomechanics, Brown University.
  31. June 16-19, 2010 – ASME Summer Bioengineering Conference, Naples, FL.
  32. August 26-29, 2009 – The 33rd Annual Meeting of the American Society of Biomechanics, Penn State University.