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 Expert  724234

Expert in Hydrographic Surveying, Shipping Accidents Resulting From Inaccurate Surveys, Expert Witness

Available for your Consulting and Expert Witness Needs

British Columbia
Education Work History Career AccomplishmentsPublicationsConsulting Services Expert Witness Market Research

Summary of Expertise:

Listed with other top experts in: 

He has investigated various shipping vessel grounding's. The most important one was the grounding of the Queen Elizabeth 2 off of Martha's Vineyard in 1992 and the subsequent trial in 1996 in a court in New York. He has investigated other shipping accidents resulting in groundings, but at a less critical or monetary level.

accident analysis

The cause of shipping accidents that are the result of poor or inaccurate nautical charts are the basis of his expertise in this area.

accident causation

All information relative to shipping accidents has to be examined. Some of these items involve ships position, ships speed, the accuracy of the nautical equipment aboard the ship and of course the nautical chart indicating water depths must be analyzed. Other elements investigated involve ships officers competency, attention to detail, ships equipment, ships draught, ships speed, etc. The information used to compile the nautical chart must be carefully scrutinized. How a hydrographic survey was conducted becomes a very important element in the investigation.

accident investigation

Having recognized the fact that an accident has occurred, it is important to reconstruct the events on the bridge of the ship to determine what courses of action lead to the accident. Various re-plots and analysis of ships position, speed and directions will assist in this investigation. Further investigations regarding the nautical chart and the information used to construct the chart must be looked at carefully.

accident reconstruction

Navigational aids are a large part of a nautical chart's information. These aids include but are not limited to the following: buoys, lights, fog horns, ships signals, rules of the road as well as both international and inland rules.

Expert can provide expertise in all of the rules of safe shipping outlined in the international rules of the road. Knowledge of these rules is required before being accepted as a shops master.



A chart is a navigational aid to the safe conduct of shipping. It is the most important aid to navigation that exists and all ships in all countries are required by law to navigate their ships with the aid of a nautical chart (either paper charts or ENC). In some instances, small yachts are exempt from the requirement of using a chart, but all prudent mariners make use of charts.

All ships and most yachts presently have access to Global Positioning information and can plot the position of the vessel anywhere in the world. These positions are plotted on charts. Some of these charts are paper and some are images on a computer screen. Expert is an expert in the use and compiling of nautical charts.



He has been deposed a number of times and knows and understand the process well.



expert witness

Shipping as it pertains to the international rules of the road is a primary area of his expertise. Ships at sea and what they are required to do to allow safe navigation are his specialty. All of Expert's expertise focuses on international shipping as it pertains to the safe movement of these ships across our oceans, up or down our rivers and into inland waters.

international shipping


international shipping regulation

He has been associated with the construction of many survey and scientific ships. He has a very good understanding of ships in this area. He understands noisy and quiet ships. Hard chine and ships designed to be effective in reducing internal noise that is detrimental to scientific and hydrographic operations. Ships with cruiser sterns are especially good a reducing ship noise, as are ships where all the machinery aboard is placed on shock absorbing footings.

marine industry

Shipping of various products is conducted and the cargoes of these ships are often maximized in order to produce larger profits for the ships owners. Often these overburdened ships run aground in confined shipping channels as a result of low tides or high atmospheric influences. Often the ship's pilots attempt to navigate in shallow water not appreciating the fact that a salt water ship is now in fresh water or is exhibiting squat as a result of speed and the shallow water. Expert can comment and offer advice in these areas.

marine shipping

Ocean and their tributaries as it pertains to national and international shipping is his specialty.


Having spent many years in Canada's Arctic, Expert has a very good understanding of Arctic ice and ice in general. He knows how ships move through ice and what it takes to get a ship through ice. He also understands the effects of ice aboard a ship and the resultant centre of gravity questions.

sea ice

Shipping accidents that result from inaccurate nautical charts are infrequent but they do happen. If a nautical chart can be found to be the cause of a ship going aground, then the owners of the ship and their insurance brokers will need Expert's help. Modern charts and associated accurate positioning system are, in many cases, incomparable and need and expert to sort out the inaccuracies. Expert can do this.

shipping accident


maritime accident

Ships that run aground on uncharted or badly charted shoals or shoals where the accurate depth has not been accurately determined need his expertise. Often, and more now that data shifts have affected so many charts there are many serious accidents just waiting to happen. Consider a large tanker running aground on a badly charted shoaling area and you will realize that all nautical charts may not be what they seem.

underwater accident investigation

Geodesy and earth shapes are a large part of hydrographic charting. Determining geographic positions either his conventional methods or by using differential Global Positioning Systems techniques is a large part of his area of expertise.


Many projection types have been used over the years to describe the earth's shape. Map projects, though now limited to Universal Transverse Mercator with a geographic superimposed grid, is the most common. Map projects are one of his areas of expertise.

map projection

The process of successfully navigating a ship from point A to point B is a process that relies on a number of aids. These aids, in modern times, is the Global Positioning System or one of its competing systems. In early times ships navigation relied on star and sun shots, radar and other much less accurate systems. I know and understand ships navigation well.


In order to navigate safely ships must know and understand both their ships draught, the ships squat and the depth of water the ship is traveling through. A clear understanding of these elements is critical to safe navigation.

navigation depth

He has a clear and certain understanding of all navigational aids necessary to the safe passage of commercial and pleasure craft shipping.

navigational aid

Ships compasses are not what they once were. Global Position Systems now have taken the place of the traditional ships compass. Ships are, nevertheless, still required to carry a compass and have it periodically adjusted by a qualified compass adjuster. A ships compass will tell the bridge officers quickly what direction the ship is heading. There are two types of compasses. One is a magnetic compass and the other is a gyro compass. The magnetic compass points to Magnetic north and the Gyro points to true north.

navigational compass

Photogrametric or photogrametry is critical to all types of terrestrial mapping. Hydrographic charts rely heavily on coastal features mapped through various photogrametric principles.

Modern photgrametry can be carried out from satellites.


photogrammetric surveying

Show Secondary and Basic Areas of Expertise

Year   Degree   Subject   Institution  
1958   BS incomplete   sciences   UBC, F.T. Fairy Technical College  

Work History:
Years   Employer   Department   Title   Responsibilities

1995 to




Hydrographic Survey sciences




Creation of a Hydrographic survey unit in Papua New Guinea 2001/2006 Creation of a Hydrographic training facility at the UTM Johor, Malaysia, 1995/2004 Expert witness testimony QE2 1996 New York City.

1960 to 1994


Federal Government of Canada


Canadian Hydrographic Service


Senior Hydrographer in Charge


Responsible for hydrographic surveys for nautical charting on the west coast and western Arctic areas of Canada. Contract supervisor for private sector hydrography for nautical chart surveys

Career Accomplishments:

Canadian Hydrographic Association National President 1987 to 1989 Prior member of the Canadian Institute of Surveying.


ACSM inshore/offshore hydrographer Certificates; Canada Lands Surveyor; Master Mariner Certificate; Accepted by the courts of New York state as an expert witness in the 1996 case Cunard versus the US Government. Qualifies by the International Hydrographic Organization as a Category A and B Hydrographer 1974. Association of Canada Lands Surveyors

Professional Appointments

Member of the board of ACLS 2010


Numerous suggestion awards for improvements to the public service during his career in the Federal Government

Publications and Patents Summary

Minor contributions to the CHA publication Lighthouse. Many final survey reports for the years 1969 to 1994. Available from the Library at the Institute of Ocean Sciences Sidney BC. Publication of 3 articles in the Hydro International Journal, April and May 2009.

Selected Publications and Publishers  
 - Reed Publishing (Hydro International)  

Government Experience:
Years   Agency   Role   Description
1960 to 1994   Canadian Hydrographic Service   Hydrographer in charge   Conducted major surveys on the coast of British Columbia and the Western Arctic. Responsible for ship board surveys involving up to 60 staff.
1973 to 1973   NOAA   Observer   Participated and observed the activities of an American survey team (NOAA) in action off the coast of Washington and Alaska. Carried out surveys in conjunction with NOAA for atomic submarine traffic in Juan De Fuca Strait
1983 to 1983   NOAA U.S.A.   Observer   Participated in surveys in Alaska and off the coast of Oregon

Consulting Services:
Selected Consulting Examples:
  • Contributed to the preparation of a negligence case against the US Government in New York in 1995/1996.Testified for the prosecution in this case.
  • In 2000 offered expert advice in regards a ship grounding in Boston Harbour, The ship was named the M.V. Limar
  • In 1999 offered expert advice in respect to the M.V. Aktea and its grounding in Stockton Harbour, California.Advice accepted. Culpability determined.
  • In 1979 conducted hydrographic surveys to determine the cause of the grounding of the M.V. Star Opal in Laredo Channel.Survey results proved culpability.
  • In 1975 conducted surveys to determine fault in the grounding of the M.V. Irish Star Dust Grounding took place in the Haddington Island area of the British Columbia coast.
Click the green button above to contact Expert for a free initial screening call regarding your expert consulting needs.  Expert is available for consulting to corporate, legal and government clients.  Remember, your initial screening call to speak with Expert is free.

Expert Witness:
Expert Witness Experience Summary:
Provided expert advice and testimony for the preparation and conduct of a case against the US Government by Cunard shipping in respect to the grounding of the QE2 off Martha's Vineyard in 1992. The case was heard in New York City in 1996. There have been other shipping accidents where expert advice was offered but these cases never came to trial.
Click the green button above to contact Expert for a free initial screening call regarding expert testimony, litigation consulting and support, forensic services, or any related expert witness services.  A few litigation needs include product liability, personal injury, economic loss, intellectual property (patent, trademark, trade secret, copyright), and insurance matters.  Remember, your initial screening call to speak with Expert is free.

International Experience:
Years   Country / Region   Summary
2000 to 2006   Papua New Guinea   Established a Hydrographic Office in the newly created National Maritime Safety Authority. Held meetings with the Australian Hydrographic Service in respect to PNG hydrographic relationships. During the time shown above a period of 8 months was spent in this endeavour.
1989 to 2000   Malaysia   Sponsored and managed a CIDA related project to create a Hydrographic Training facility at the University of Technology in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. The period of time spent on this project over this time frame above was 15 trips to Malaysia and Singapore with each trip lasting 3 weeks. During the life of this project over 1.5 million dollars was spent.

1993 to 1993   Greenland   Gathering information for Oceanographic studies in the Carey Islands in the Lincoln Sea in support of an oceanographic study of warm water up-wellings.
1980 to 1990   United States of America   Various period during this time participated in NOAA surveys as an observer off the coast of western America and in Alaska

Market Research:
Created his company's present web site. Published brochures and contacted various world wide shipping firms. He presented his company's qualifications, experience and availability to several companies' potential accident problems.

Click the green button above to contact Expert for a free initial screening call regarding your marketing research, industry research, and company research needs.  For research needs involving multiple experts or secondary research, a Research Director can be assigned to coordinate the work into a custom report for you as a potentially quicker and more cost effective alternative to doing this work yourself or hiring a boutique consultancy.  Remember, your initial screening call to speak with Expert is free.

Additional Skills and Services:

Hydrographic lectures to board members of the National Maritime Safety Authority of Papua New Guinea 2006. Many others during his tenure with the Federal Government of Canada.

Supplier and Vendor Location and Selection

Prepared and offered Hydrographic Survey contracts to private sector bidding. Analyzed bids and awarded contracts to selected vendors. Purchased many millions of dollars worth of survey equipment over his years with the Federal Government.

Other Skills and Services

He is qualified through the ACSM as a Inshore/ offshore hydropgrapher. He is a qualified Canada Land Surveyor and further quualified by the IHO at the Cat A and Cat B levels. Further he is a Master Home trade ships Captain.


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