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Course Catalog > Crash Investigation

Commercial Vehicle Crash Investigation - Level I   


This intensive course will cover the unique characteristics of commercial motor vehicles and the special dynamics at play when one is involved in a collision.

Detailed information of the nomenclature and operation of commercial motor vehicles will provide you with a level of competence needed to have an adequate understanding of mechanical components, parts and pieces of the commercial motor vehicle and how they may factor into your investigation. To reinforce the concepts presented, you will conduct “hands-on” exercises and vehicle testing during the course.

Topics Include

  • Tractor-trailer nomenclature
  • Brake systems: configuration and operation
  • Wheels, rims and tires
  • Steering suspensions and frames
  • Trailer coupling devices - fifth wheels
  • Driver concerns - log books
  • Vehicle components
  • Center of mass determinations
  • Skid mark measurements and speed analysis
  • Jackknifing
  • Rollover
  • Vehicle dynamics in braking
  • Weight shifting


Law enforcement and private traffic crash investigators, claims adjusters, engineers, attorneys, safety officers, military investigative personnel, animators and graphic designers

Course Length

40 hours


This course is designed for traffic crash investigators who have completed, at a minimum, IPTM’s At-Scene Traffic Crash/Traffic Homicide Investigation course or its equivalent. You should have a good working knowledge of the techniques and applications of the formulas presented in the basic course, as the presentation of mathematical formulas will build upon techniques already used by investigators.

What to Bring


  • Scientific calculator


  • Work clothes for outside activities (including inclement weather)
  • Camera and equipment to document field exercises

Other Courses in the Series

ACTAR Information

IPTM's Commercial Vehicle Crash Investigation - Level I course is eligible for 40 ACTAR CEUs.

What Our Students Are Saying

  • “Instructors were excellent and extremely knowledgeable.” – J.T.
  • "Sufficient time was given to explain CMV parts in order to understand what items the investigator looks at and uses during crash investigation.” – A.G.
  • “The instructor presented the material in a way that the entire class understood. He has an excellent grasp of the subject and related well with the real world examples.” – S.S.
  • “Overall I gained a ton of knowledge, but I think the hands-on portion was most beneficial.” – Ofc. N.S.
  • “The instructors took the time to break down the parts of the truck/trailer, explain what they do along with how to check them.” – Lt. T.C.
  • “The course is essential for any collision investigator involved in reconstructing commercial motor vehicle collisions. Excellent instructors.” – Tpr. M.D.
  • “Both instructors did a great job of related the content to the whole class regardless of students' prior knowledge/experience. Would like to take other classes with them.” – Ofc. R.D.
  • “I greatly enjoyed the class and was able to take away a lot of information that will help me on my daily job when it comes to CMV.” Tpr. F.G.
  • “Fantastic experience; can’t wait for level II.” – P. F. Reconstructionist

Currently, there are no open enrollment classes scheduled for this course.  Click here to continue searching for other courses.