Miami River Bridges
Crystal Springs Dam
O’Hare Airport Air Traffic Control Tower and Base Building
Cabinda Gulf Oil Headquarters Building

Public infrastructure systems are crucial to the metropolitan areas they serve and are highly vulnerable to terrorist attacks. Explosive attack damage to critical infrastructure may disable essential services for significant periods of time and cause economic hardships that extend well beyond immediate areas of initial attack, impacting communities, regions, states - even the nation. Hinman performs vulnerability assessments to limit damage by recommending necessary mitigation measures that can be implemented before an attack occurs.

Our staff is experienced in evaluating infrastructure system characteristics caused by explosions. These include: identifying critical threat locations based on structural vulnerabilities, determining weapon sizes needed to cause catastrophic failures, as well as extent and damage levels expected from defined weapon sizes. 

By identifying critical areas, modes of failure, and minimum critical charge weights to cause catastrophic structural damage, we help clients implement cost-effective security measures. Tailored analyses for each infrastructure project allow us to apply our techniques to a wide range of infrastructure components.

Hinman’s specialized services include vulnerability and risk assessment, progressive collapse protection, retrofit design, post-disaster assessment, finite element modeling, air-blast design for new structures as well as physical security criteria development, training seminars, and explosive testing.

Our assessment and analysis experience on infrastructure projects includes: bridges, tunnels, subway stations, light-rail terminals, airport terminals, dams, power generation facilities, and port facilities.

Sub Sectors


Increasing population, sprawling suburbs and other issues mean bridges, tunnels, airports and mass transit systems are subjected to routine traffic loads beyond serviceability limits. Chronic deferred maintenance increases the risk of failure. 

Hinman can perform vulnerability assessments for major transportation structures to evaluate the locations and magnitudes of explosives required to cause damages and collapse. We also are experienced in designing airport infrastructures that meet TSA antiterrorism requirements. Our approach is to create attractive, non-obtrusive buffers that will keep weapons from vulnerable locations, reducing the explosion impacts and hardening requirements. 

Case Study:  O’Hare Airport Air Traffic Control Tower and Base Building 

Deliberate and accidental explosions in the nuclear, electric, petroleum and gas industries are an ongoing and increasing concern in the U.S. due to aging infrastructures and the rapid expansion of domestic wells over the past decade. In addition, vapor cloud volatility presents an attractive target for terrorist attacks.  After events such as these, it can take years for a corporation to recover from the business disruptions, lost lives, environmental impacts, and diminished public confidence. 

Hinman’s tools quickly and accurately compute load liabilities and evaluate damages from various threat potentials. Project experience includes: post-event investigations, pre-event design of structures subjected to deliberate explosions, physical breaches of containment, vapor cloud and dust explosions and debris and shrapnel impact modeling. 

Using our evaluation tools, we can answer our clients’ urgent requests about the impact of potential hazards more quickly and less expensively than our competitors. For instance, we checked the integrity of a structure in a valley near a PG&E gas pipeline immediately after the San Bruno pipeline explosion and fire.


Drinking, sanitation and its interdependence with other sectors make water an essential infrastructure sector. Transportation, critical manufacturing, power generation, and agriculture all rely on access to safe water. 

But water can be fragile. Storms cause sewer pipes to back up, moderate earthquakes in California cause catastrophic levee failures, and car bombs can damage dams and water mains.

Our tools identify areas vulnerable to natural hazards, accidents and deliberate attacks, where failures are most likely to occur, and design these areas to mitigate consequences. This allows system operators to make knowledgeable decisions about where and how to protect their assets.

Case Study:  Water Supply Portals Assessment