We are experiencedskilled researcherscreators passionate

The minds behind the solutions

A specialized team with a multi-disciplinary background in the academics, public and private sectors, we are experts who are uncompromising in the advancement of transportation safety.

The team has many years of experience in product development, testing, manufacturing and consultation on policy and implementation.

Ben Powell

P. Eng.

Vice President

Ben is a founding member of Safe Roads Engineering and leads the Research and Development team, developing and testing innovative products and solutions. He has more than 20 years of experience in roadside safety design and construction, mobile lifts, noise barrier design and construction, and crash testing. 

Ben is a licensed Professional Engineer throughout Canada and a graduate from the University of Waterloo in Civil – Structural Engineering.  Ben is an active participant with committees such as Transportation Research Board (TRB), American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), Canadian Association of Technical Accident Investigators and Reconstructionists (CATAIR), American Society for Industrial Security (ASIS), and the Global Security Exchange (GSX).

Leo (Joe) Yodock

Product Development Specialist

Leo “Joe” Yodock, III is a product development specialist with Safe Roads Research and Development.  He has a degree in business management and his entrepreneurial spirit has enabled him to build and sell several companies.

His experience with plastics, product development, manufacturing, and market building, enables him to bring a unique perspective to Safe Roads. He holds over a dozen patents in the fields of traffic control and security.  He was instrumental in the introduction and industry acceptance of water ballasted channelizers and barriers. Working with multiple industry organizations, agencies, and trade groups, he championed the inclusion of the MUTCD category 6F-66 Longitudinal Channelizing barricades, as well as much of the current American with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidance used for crowd control and pedestrian barricades. He worked directly with The Federal Highway Administration and Texas Transportation Institute, to develop a test matrix to evaluate Longitudinal Channelizing Devices within the NCHRP 350. In the area of security, his products are protecting high value assets worldwide. 

Dean C. Alberson

PhD, P.E.

Senior Research Engineer

Dr. Dean C. Alberson has served most of his career at the Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI). Since beginning his tenure in 1992, he’s been actively involved in over 2000 crash tests! His passion for new things is contagious and has demonstrated broad success.

Since retirement from TTI he is serving as a consultant to private sector entities that want to save lives through highway safety and physical security. His passion for new things is contagious and has demonstrated broad success in developing new research areas and new products (Patents) with individuals across Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI). Prior to his retirement from TTI he served as an Assistant Agency Director assisting individuals and divisions in the pursuit of new research initiatives. He was also a Senior Research Engineer and Program Manager of the Crashworthy Structures Program. Dr. Alberson is a registered professional engineer in the State of Texas. He obtained his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering Structures at Texas A&M University. 

Mark Ayton

P. Eng.

Senior Research Engineer

Mark is a licensed Professional Engineer in Ontario with almost four decades of highway design and construction experience. Mark joined Safe Roads Engineering (SRE) as a technical expert on geometric and roadside safety design after a 31-year career with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO).

At MTO, Mark developed and implemented many construction standards, design guidelines, design policies, design manuals and technical presentations and training sessions for MTO and the Ontario Provincial Standards for Roads and Public Works (OPS). From 1999 to 2018, Mark was an associate member of the AASHTO Technical Committee on Roadside Safety who are responsible for developing and updating the AASHTO Roadside Design Guide and Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH). At SRE, Mark continues to apply his technical expertise on developing and crash testing new roadside safety products, safety assessments and technical training. Mark continues to be an active participant with TRB Roadside Safety Design committee, NCHRP projects and Task Force 13 in the U.S.

Jennifer Rasmussen

PhD, P.E.

Senior Research Engineer

Dr. Jennifer Rasmussen (formerly Jennifer Schmidt) is a Senior Research Engineer at Safe Roads Engineering US. Dr. Rasmussen received her Ph.D. in civil engineering at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and is a licensed professional engineer in the states of Nebraska and Texas.

She was previously the Associate Director of the Midwest Roadside Safety Facility (MwRSF), Assistant Director of the MwRSF Computational Mechanics and Visualization Laboratory Division, and Research Associate Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Dr. Rasmussen ‘s primary focus is the analysis and design of roadside safety hardware using non-linear finite element analysis, including LS-DYNA software. Dr. Rasmussen has created and validated many LS-DYNA hardware and barrier impact simulations. She has also been active in the testing, analysis, and implementation of many roadside safety devices. Dr. Rasmussen has published numerous research reports, refereed journal articles, and conference papers. Dr. Rasmussen received the Transportation Research Board Committee on Roadside Safety Design Best Paper Award in five times in the past eight years for her work on approach guardrail transitions, an energy-absorbing, high containment barrier system, and steel bridge rail designs. She is also a member of the Transportation Research Board AKD20 Committee on Roadside Safety Design. 

Talha Ghuman

P. Eng.

Research Engineer

Mr. Ghuman has a background in mechanical design and over 5 years of experience developing and testing innovative roadside safety products. Furthermore, he is an Author of several professional publications and holds numerous patents in his field.    

Mr. Ghuman has successfully collaborated with various roadside safety stakeholders including, product manufacturers, policy makers, transportation and law enforcement agencies to conduct over 100 full-scale crash tests involving passenger vehicles, busses, tractor trailers, boats, and snowmobiles. Mr. Ghuman holds multiple patents on roadside safety devices and is an active participant of the ASTM F12 subcommittee on security systems and the Transportation Research Board’s AKD20 subcommittee on roadside safety. He has overseen multiple projects from conception to completion and enjoys tackling new problems with enthusiasm. Mr. Ghuman has also presented a number of topics and products in his field in front of professionals from all over the world. 

Brett Van Mierlo

P. Eng.

Simulation and Analysis, Engineer

Brett Van Mierlo is a graduate of The University of Ontario Institute of Technology with a degree in Mechanical Engineering. He utilizes his experience in full-scale vehicle crash testing within the design and analysis of roadside safety hardware specializing in simulation and modeling.

Brett has been involved in full-scale crash testing with Safe Roads R&D, using his firsthand experience to validate finite element analysis simulations in LS-DYNA. Brett has contributed to the development of multiple roadside safety products utilizing computer simulation to verify proposed improvements and optimizing designs. He works closely with our customers and team, to determine critical impact locations for testing to various standards.

Mac Readhead

Product Development Specialist

Mac Readhead has a background in Precast Concrete, Plastics, Steel Fabrication and Noise Attenuation design. Joining the SafeRoads R&D Team after 8 years in the Noise Barrier Industry, he has worked to develop products to combine advancements in Roadside Safety and Noise Mitigation. An avant-garde to the core, Mac is unwavering in his passion for creating.

Mac has over 10 years of experience working with SolidWorks to develop concepts as prototypes from 3D printed models to building finite element analysis simulations to validate structures. Working with industry leaders in both roadside safety and noise barrier sectors, Mac has designed products that have been successfully crash tested to MASH standards and are in use across North America today. Mac continues to apply his knowledge of various materials and manufacturing methods on innovative highway safety products within the Safe Roads Research and Development team.

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