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Specialties & Experience of this Expert Witness

General Specialties:

Environmental and Hydrology

Keywords/Search Terms:

sinkhole, groundwater, landslide, drilling, hydrogeology, rockfall, karst, vibration, blast, earthquake, contamination, pipeline, fracking, water, erosion, construction, stormwater, physics, leak, cave


BSc, Haverford College; MSc, Brown University; PhD, Brown University

Years in Practice:


Number of Times Deposed/Testified in Last 4 Yrs:


Additional Information

Dr. Bechtel is geophysicist/geologist, and a world-renowned expert on sinkholes. But not just sinkholes; bedrock conditions, caves, water pollution, and all issues related to karst terranes. Dr. Bechtel has 25+ years of experience in the engineering/environmental industry, as well as faculty positions at Franklin & Marshall College, the University of Memphis and the University of Pennsylvania, and is an appointed member of the International Karst Commission. Dr. Bechtel has been an expert in dozens of sinkole or karst-related cases - often related to causes of sinkholes and/or water problems. Dr. Bechtel also has expertise and courtroom experience in Unconventional Oil & Gas, hydraulic fracturing (fracking), and fracking-industry-related earthquakes, horizontal directional drilling (HDD), as well as all fields of seismology, seismic hazards, vibration monitoring and analysis, subsidence, soil creep, landslides, rockfalls, non-destructive evaluation of earthen dams and levees, subsurface utility locating and marking, and corrosion of underground structures. He has used non-destructive geophysical subsurface imaging to locate buried weapons caches and other evidence, as well as human remains (e.g. in missing persons cases or to confirm the presence of burials in cemetery plots). For the past 20 years, Dr. Bechtel has also been involved in cutting edge research into detection of landmines, unexploded ordnance (UXO), improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and other explosive remnants of war (ERW). Dr. Bechtel has been recognized as an expert by county, state and federal courts, and has never had a successful challenge to his qualifications.