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James Wade

Principal Associate
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James graduated from the University of Leeds in 2006 with a MEng degree in Automotive Engineering. Whilst at University he developed a bench top reactor to simulate oil degradation in internal combustion engines and was also an integral part of the University’s Formula Student Engine team, where he designed the fuel, electric and cooling systems for the 2005/6 car.

After graduating, he accepted a role as a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) Associate working between the University of Sheffield and JCB Earthmovers Ltd. Here, he participated in a research project focussing on optimising the arrangement of pin joint and component materials. The aim of the project was to reduce the dependency on grease whilst improving service life. He developed designs for a test rig which could test a variety of loading conditions and joint arrangements.

James then worked as a self-employed subcontractor for a Kent based Kit Car manufacturer where he carried out a variety of roles including design, fabrication, servicing, modification and repair of a broad variety of both road and race cars. In 2010 James set up his own Automotive Engineering practice specialising in the maintenance and modification of classic BMW cars, as well as sourcing parts.

James joined Hawkins in 2014 and conducts Road Traffic Accident (RTA) and engineering investigations, specialising in other automotive related matters such as vehicle fires.

As part of his continuing professional development James has been trained in the use of the Bosch CDR tool which can be used to download crash data from some modern vehicles. This data can include information on vehicle speeds, brake and steering application, impact direction and severity, occupancy, airbag deployment and seatbelt usage. All of which can assist in the reconstruction of road traffic collisions.

James is also proficient in the use of both tripod based and hand held laser scanners for recording collision locations and the internal and external shapes of damaged vehicles allowing detailed analysis. He is a Principal Associate based in our Reigate Office.


MEng Automotive Engineering – University of Leeds
AMIMechE Associate Member of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers
UCPD Forensic Collision Investigation – De Montfort University

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An Event Data Recorder or EDR is a function or device installed in a vehicle that records technical vehicle and occupant information for a brief period of time (seconds, not minutes) before, during and after a collision, for the purpose of monitoring and assessing vehicle safety system performance.

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