Tag Archives: industry

What Qualities Make an Expert Witness’ Testimony Effective?

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The role of an expert witness at trial is to make difficult subject matter understandable to a layperson. Their testimony must educate the trier of fact in a trial, which could be a judge or a jury. In some instances, they need only to convey one thematic matter of fact which only a qualified expert can speak to. However, in other instances, they need to explain several different complex themes. They may have to define complicated terms, discuss industry standards, or offer analytical opinions. 

An expert witness can play an instrumental part in how a trier of fact rules on a case. It is imperative that attorneys select experts who are able to provide highly effective testimony.

Strong Communication Skills

When cases involve subject matter that most people aren’t knowledgeable about, relaying key information about facts in dispute may prove difficult. Expert witnesses will likely need to be comfortable discussing topics with language that is simpler than the language that they use in their professional roles. Good expert testimony is easy to understand, educational, and concise.

Irrefutable Expertise

A persuasive expert needs to demonstrate authoritative credibility. Credentials should include good educational qualifications and professional experience. A financial expert witness should have practical experience in accounting, banking, or securities. A medical expert witness should have a working understanding of the issues that are central to a claim or defense.

Resilience Under Scrutiny

Experts need to show a high degree of certainty in their assertions. They may have to withstand extensive cross-examination that calls their testimony into question.

Expert witnesses do not provide legal opinions, and they cannot offer speculation about liability. Instead, they may only aid plaintiffs and defendants in proving matters of fact. For this reason, they have to be good educators. Effective testimony is predicated on a witness’ ability to demonstrate authoritative insight and craft a compelling narrative.

Challenges for America’s Railroad Industry

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Railroad Industry

America’s railroad industry has been around for over two centuries and while that shows the ability of railroad companies to adapt to the ever-changing landscape of freight transportation, it also brings challenges that railroad companies have to face to survive. 

Aging Railroad Yards 

In order to maintain a position in the marketplace, railroad companies need to make sure they have innovative equipment and recycled and renewed rail yards. Rail yards need to have good air supply to run the trains and these air lines need to be properly maintained and replaced if they are old or damaged. Finding a professional company that is experienced with yard air requirements is critical to successful yard maintenance. 

Fierce Competition

The U.S. population continues to grow and with that the demand for supplies increases. Even with the projected rise in freight and transportation needs, there is no guarantee the railroad industry will see these jobs. There is a lot of competition for railroad companies and they have to fight to keep their place in the market. Railroad companies need to continually revamp their systems and invest in their equipment and infrastructure to ensure they are operating in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible. This will ensure they can pass the savings on to their clients and secure long haul transportation contracts.

Collapsing Demand for Coal

Coal continues to be the top product carried by railroads, but the demand for coal is dropping rapidly due to its high levels of carbon content. The recent changes in the coal industry have resulted in massive losses for railroad companies. In fact, estimates are that railroad companies will lose billions of dollars in the near future due to a sharp decrease in desire for coal. 

More and More Regulations

Railroad companies are in danger of being regulated out of the marketplace. Thanks to potential new regulations imposed by the Surface Transportation Board, railroad companies may be severely limited on how much they can charge their customers. With limited income, railroad companies are less able to improve their services.

No one knows exactly what comes next for the U.S. railroad industry. The future remains challenging, but they have proven their ability to evolve and adapt and we expect nothing less in the future.