Forensic engineering

The Department of Forensic Engineering works within the Directorate of Judicial Expertise of Hungarian Institute for Forensic Sciences.

The main duty of the department is to fulfill an official assignment in a case where a law allows or obliges the conduct of the probationary procedure ex officio, or (Eg civil, criminal and administrative matters) or, depending on its free capacity, based on a mandate, to carry out judicial expert activities, to produce judiciary expert opinions on the laws, regulations, instructions, and professional methodology.

Within the Department of Forensic Engineering, the judicial experts work in four main areas. The main areas are the following:

  • road vehicles and transport
  • architecture
  • IT
  • speech and voice recognition

The experts can do the required measurements and test on-site. The department has the necessary personal conditions and technical background to perform the tasks. The experts of the department carry out their expert tasks in territorial institutes operating at several points of the country. The experts engage in complementary activities in areas of their competence to provide the professional background needed to produce appropriate, well- founded expertise.
The department’s experts are members of several domestic and international organizations:

  • Hungarian Chamber of Judicial Experts (MISZK)
  • Chamber of Architects
  • Chamber of Engineers
  • EVU (European Association for Accident Research and Analysis)

Two of the experts specialized in road traffic have a certificate issued by IQ-CERT Quality Assurance and Certification Institute certified according to DIN EN ISO / IEC 17024: 2012.

Section of Vehicular Forensic

The tasks performed by the road traffic expert can be divided into the following main groups:

  • contribution with Authorities at accident site, collecting necessary data for the expertise, shooting photos to reconstruct the original state
  • analysing road accidents (movement conditions, speeds, …etc.) using software
  • commenting railway accidents from the road traffic point of view
  • investigation of the technical context of road accidents (establishment or exclusion of occasional technical failures)
  • investigating the causes of road accidents due to environmental impacts (eg. weather conditions, different road conditions, etc.)
  • investigation of road accidents from the driving technique and avoidance point of view
  • investigating road accidents at limited light conditions by using digital camera technique and advanced computer technology
  • statements of vehicle damage by accidents or thefts
  • analysing insurance frauds from the expert point of view
  • analysing situations in police offense procedures
  • investigating vehicles modified for the propose of smuggling,
  • investigating of unauthorized modifications
  • evaluation of road vehicles(tax base of customs, domestic and foreign exchange value calculations)
  • investigation of vehicle repairs based on warranty, professionalism and cost considerations
  • determining maintenance and operating failures of road vehicles
  • determining the link between the damage caused by road accidents of malfunction and the damages

In road vehicle area, we can give expertise on the following competencies:

  • road safety engineering (accident analysis)
  • road vehicle testing
  • urban traffic, traffic technology and traffic management
  • mining and construction machinery
  • motor vehicle transport (repair, maintenance, vehicle evaluation)
  • road transport, transportation
  • road vehicles
  • road vehicle design engineering
  • agricultural and food mechanization
  • technological design, maintenance and operation of road construction machinery
  • mobile loading machine, loading machine
  • production of agricultural machinery
  • manufacture of food and tobacco machinery
  • manufacture of machine tool
  • manufacture of household appliances
  • manufacture of paper and printing machinery
  • manufacture of rubber and plastic products (except road vehicles)

For the experts in road vehicle area different computer software are available (PC-CRASH, Virtual Crash, EUROTAX, Audatex system, etc.), which are regularly updated.

Group of Forensic Architecture

The tasks performed by experts in construction and skilled work can be divided into the following main groups:

Design work (architecture, building physics, geotechnics, foundation construction)

  • examination and evaluation of construction plans from technical, legal and standardization point of view
  • creating control calculations

Execution work (construction industry, building physics, building construction, geotechnical engineering, construction)

  • evaluation of the quality of the construction work, quality classification
  • analysis of the execution work, identification of possible errors, determination of the technical and cost implications of the repair

Investment Assessment (construction works)

  • investigating and analysing the process of construction works
  • analysis of the technical content and value of the works

Cost analysis (construction industry, building physics, geotechnical engineering, supporting structures)

  • analysing the cost of planning and construction work, real cost determination
  • analysing the cost of construction work processes

Determination of damage

  • determining the extent of damage to buildings and structures (pipe breaking, fire, hail, construction defect…etc.) designing the technical content and cost of repair
  • analysing damages during the use and handling of buildings and structures

Status examination

  • record and document the status of existing buildings
  • investigating and evaluating the status of damaged buildings

Building technology

Control of building organization and technologies

Real estate valuation

  • determining the value of sales of residential, office, commercial and other community buildings, industrial, agricultural estates, and construction sites, making value divisions
  • usage fee, in some cases rent determination
  • investigating value-added investments, analyzing the impact of building structure damage to value

In architecture area we can give expertise on the following competencies:

  • real estate valuations
  • construction industry
  • building construction
  • construction work
  • building physics
  • architecture
  • building power engineering
  • building material industry
  • support structures (statics)
  • geotechnology, civil engineering
  • building mechanization
  • building technology

For the experts in architecture area different computer software are available, which are regularly updated.

Section of Forensic Information Technology

In IT area, we can accomplish the following IT activities:

  • design and organization of IT systems
  • software,
  • IT equipment, PC, peripherals and local networks (hardware)
  • IT security
  • studio technology, multimedia
  • investigating tablets, GPS devices, and mobile phones.

In IT area we can give expertise on the following competencies:

  • software,
  • studio technology, multimedia related IT activities,
  • IT equipment, PC, peripherals and local networks (hardware)
  • IT security
  • design and organization of IT systems
  • measurement technology related to electronic communication systems
  • wired electronic communication
  • digital broadcasting
  • wireless electronic communication

For the experts in IT area different computer software are available (Oxygen Forensic Detective; Belkasoft Evidence Center Ultimate,… etc.), which are regularly updated.

Laboratory of Speech and Voice Recognition

Within speech and voice recognition specialization the following tests can be performed:

  • investigating and analysing of audio records
  • quality improvement of audio records
  • script from audio records
  • improving speech intelligibility
  • investigating audio record manipulations
  • identifying speaker (including voice sampling)

In speech and voice recognition area we can give expertise on the following competencies:

  • sound technology
  • content editing and creating in the field of audio-visual media

For the experts in the area different computer software and a so-called deaf-room is available.

Head of the Department of Forensic Engineering:

László Tangl
Department of Forensic Engineering
director, forensic vehicular expert