Brunswick Police Department established a collision reconstruction unit in
1999. The purpose of the team is to assist Patrol Officers with crashes
involving extensive property damage, death, or those which may involve
criminal prosecution. The unit is comprised of three officers, Lieutenant
Thomas Garrepy and Sergeant Russ Wrede.
who are assigned to the reconstruction unit have demonstrated a strong
background in crash investigation. Officers are selected based by a
specific process, and then attend a total of 240 hours of initial
training, broken down into three phases. The scope of the training focuses
on many different aspects of crash reconstruction.
first phase includes discussion of physical evidence, human elements, skid
mark analysis, crash scene photography and scale diagramming. The second
phase continues with kinetic energy, conservation of momentum,
time/distance/motion equations, lamp analysis, tire damage evaluation, and
vector sum analysis. The final phase focuses on the derivation and
application of common formulas, based on Newton’s Laws of Motion. Topics
include the determination of speed using conservation of linear momentum,
commercial motor vehicle and motorcycle dynamics, as well as numerous
practical applications in controlled vehicle experiments.
the Officer has completed the above listed training, a resume and
application is submitted to the Maine Criminal Justice Academy for
acceptance into the program. Once accepted, an Officer must complete a
minimum of four crash reconstructions within a year’s time frame, under
the supervision of an experienced Collision Reconstruction Specialist, and
take a certification exam. Once certified by the academy, an Officer
must continue to be active in the field, reconstructing at least
four crashes a year, and then recertifying with a written test.
training includes the investigation of motorcycle, commercial motor
vehicle, bicycle/pedestrian, and railroad grade crossing crash
investigations. All of our Officers are familiarized with Forensic Mapping
of the crash scenes.
Officers assigned to the Collision Reconstruction Unit have successfully
passed the certification process for the Accreditation Commission for
Traffic Accident Reconstruction (A.C.T.A.R). The organization, formed in
1985, establishes minimum standards for Traffic Reconstruction Specialists
from around the world, including those in law enforcement, engineers, and
those in the private consulting business.
Collision Reconstruction Unit is responsible for the reconstruction phase
of all fatal crashes, those with extensive property damage, and
prosecution cases, where culpability or fault must be determined. In
addition, the unit is often tasked with traffic safety assignments as
assigned by the Command Staff. The Officers also are actively involved
with instruction of new Officers at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, as
well as the Brunswick Police Department Field Training program.
more information on the Brunswick Police Department’s Collision
Reconstruction Unit, please contact:
Lieutenant Thomas Garrepy firstname.lastname@example.org;
Sergeant Russ Wrede at email@example.com.