Robert N. Kenney

Robert N. Kenney, P.E., CxA+BE


A results-oriented leader, Robert “Bob” Kenney is a Principal at ESi, responsible for the overall strategic leadership, oversight, and performance of the firm.  With over 35 years of engineering experience, Mr. Kenney is well-recognized for his technical expertise, extensive consulting experience, and practical down-to-earth approach. He specializes in complex failure investigations of structures and building systems, equipment and processes (construction, industrial, mining, and manufacturing), pipelines, and train derailments.

Before joining ESi, Mr. Kenney gained deep experience working in a variety of key technical roles for a class I railroad, a global manufacturing company, and a consulting firm specializing in industrial and municipal facilities design. At ESi, this diverse background has served him well, allowing him to serve clients across a broad range of areas. Mr. Kenney’s ability to problem-solve complex issues and communicate his insights clearly and thoughtfully have made him a trusted adviser to his client whether the incident is a routine operational issue or a high-profile investigation involving loss of life with millions of dollars at stake. 


Mr. Kenney has investigated failures in a wide range of industrial, commercial and residential structures resulting from both natural elements (e.g. flood, wind, fire, erosion) and other influences such as design, materials, construction, and maintenance. He has been retained for projects such as a $20M water intrusion and construction defect claim for a 40-story condominium, a downtown Atlanta parking deck collapse, hurricane damage to a multi-story casino, railroad and tunnel collapses, category I & II dam failures, and expressway paving and bifurcation claims totaling millions of dollars.

Construction & Mining

Mr. Kenney has a wealth of expertise in the full lifecycle of construction and mining operations, including construction methods and materials, structural design and installation, differential foundation movement, building envelope moisture intrusion, storm water detention and runoff, safety code violations, and structural forensic investigation. His experience includes construction design and management services for water and wastewater treatment facilities, pump stations and pipelines.

Industrial Accidents & Analysis

Mr. Kenney has investigated industrial processes and pipeline systems for reliability, durability, maintainability, risk assessment and operational practices.  His work includes environmental and safety audits for construction and code violations, shock and electrocution conditions, and hazardous material identification, handling, storage and disposal. He has also investigated industrial accidents, including mechanical system failures and improper manufacturing practices. His experience includes numerous high profile investigations such as a large overhead crane accident and pipeline explosions.

Rail Accidents

Mr. Kenney gained much of his expertise in rail working for Norfolk Southern, one of the country’s premier rail carriers. There, he learned firsthand about the operational and regulatory challenges of the industry.  Since then, he has investigated multiple derailments and at-grade crossing incidents, often involving loss of life and multi-million dollar lawsuits.


  • Avoiding Accidents and OSHA Citations by Knowing Your Combustible Dust Hazards, Powder and Bulk Engineering magazine, December 2012
  • Find Out Who Really Runs the Show, Environmental Magazine, March 2001
  • Manual of Operations FD-3, Contributing Author, Water Environment Federation, January 1994

Project Experience

ESi's expertise spans dozens of industries and specializations organized across several practice groups, each staffed by dozens of in-house experts with the technical knowledge, hands-on expertise, and courtroom experience required to execute projects for and with our clients from start to finish.

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