Posts Tagged ‘law enforcement diagram’

The Crash Zone – Crash Scene Drawing Software

Whether they like it or not, Law Enforcement officers, Crash Investigators and Reconstructionists need to draw. They usually have many other things they would rather spend their time doing, but having an accurate, neat diagram of the crash scene is critical to their investigation.

Crash Zone 3D crash scene diagram

3D Crash Scene drawn with The Crash Zone

The Crash Zone drawing software (The Crash Zone web page) is the ideal tool for Crash Investigators and Reconstructionists who want great diagrams. It is easy to learn and use because it has many unique features that are specifically for drawing crashes. It’s NOT for engineers or architects or someone drawing a house floor plan. The Crash Zone is ONLY for drawing crash scenes.

Pocket PC Data Collector Ideal for Mapping Crash Scenes

Pocket Zone data collector

Pocket Zone on a TDS Recon

There is plenty for the investigator to do at the scene of a major crash, not the least which involves taking many precise measurements of vehicle locations, debris, skid marks, and other evidence. These measurements are critical in reconstructing the crash and creating the detailed diagrams of the scene that may become part of a courtroom presentation. In years past, taking and recording all the necessary measurements could require multiple officers and take hours of time, resulting in long road closures.

One advantage investigators have today is the availability of laser measurement systems and total stations that can streamline the process of taking these measurements. The Pocket Zone™, data collection software, is used by the officer to capture all the measurements at the scene. Back at the office, the 3D point coordinates are uploaded into The Crash Zone™,crash scene drawing software, where the final diagram is completed. This technology greatly speeds up the process of mapping a crash and diagramming the scene. Some equipment can even be operated by a single officer.

Crash and Crime Scene Diagrams Are Obsolete – Right?

Investigators today are being bombarded with talk of point clouds, fly-throughs, animations, orthrectified images, and simulations. Since a crash or crime scene can just be “scanned” and recorded as a point cloud, some sales people will say that’s all an investigator needs to present in court. Just present the jury with a fly-through of the point cloud or show them a simulation and there is no need to create those old-fashioned diagrams any longer, right?


Upgrade Your Court Presentations With Animation

If you’ve ever wondered if it’s worth the additional expense to upgrade your crash scene diagramming software, one expert responds, “Absolutely.” That expert is Bobby Jones of Bobby Jones Reconstruction of Knoxville, Tenn. For more than 25 years, Jones has been a trained crash reconstructionist and crime scene investigator, providing his expertise to private law firms, major trucking firms, insurance and government agencies, County Sheriffs, the State of Tennessee, and to prosecution and criminal defense clients.

The Crash Zone Includes Easy-to-Use Animation Tools

A major reason that Jones suggests upgrading your diagramming software is to get the animation features now offered in some software. Jones has been a longtime user of The Crash Zone, diagramming software from The CAD Zone, Inc. ( ) of Beaverton, Oregon. The Crash Zone is widely used among law enforcement professionals and crash scene investigators. It allows users to create realistic 2D and 3D diagrams of scenes. The latest version of The Crash Zone also features the ability to quickly create 2D and 3D animations of objects that are based on your exact measurements.

Reconstructionists Play Pivotal Role At Remote Crash Scenes

Vehicular accidents unfortunately don’t occur in just one locale. They strike every hour, on the hour, in the most populous areas of a state as well as in the remotest. The challenge is that the more remote the accident scene, chances are high that the expertise needed to fully investigate crash scenes will be sparse. Nevertheless, most cases involving a crash usually end up in court, making it essential to examine the crash scene thoroughly and generate a detailed diagram that will present the most likely sequence of events for a jury.


Almost invariably, well trained reconstructionists investigate and document crash scenes, but usually not far from their base of operation. When accidents occur in remote parts of a state, the investigating officer or team may not include a reconstructionist. Since the scene still must be investigated, mapped and diagrammed, these documentation steps can be more challenging.