Kingsley v. BSNF Railway Co.

This case was tried by Craig Oliver and Mark Brinkmann.  We represented the conductor of a freight train who worked for the BNSF.  The train that our client was operating (along with a BNSF Engineer) was involved in a collision with another BNSF train in 2009.  The case was filed under the Federal Employers Liability Act which allows employees of a railroad to sue for personal injury damages when injured due to the negligence of the railroad.

This case involved a train collision derailment that occurred on June 29, 2009 near the town of Sleeper, Missouri.  Our case turned on proving that a railroad signal governing the movement of the train malfunctioned.  Our theory was that the signal was green when it should have been yellow which would have warned the crew of the train they had to stop ahead to avoid hitting the other train.  The other train was parked on a siding but was hanging out on the main track.  The crew (and our client) saw the green light and proceeded ahead at track speed.  By the time they saw the other train hanging out, it was too late to stop a collision and a derailment ensued.

Our client suffered neck and back injuries which did not require surgery.  After a week-long trial, the jury found in our favor and awarded our client $400,000.  The BNSF offered nothing prior to trial.


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