HUNTINGTON - A Virginia man has filed a suit against CSX Transportation Inc. claiming he was not hired because he was colorblind when, in fact, he is not colorblind and has taken two tests to prove it.

Shawn Nicely, 24, of Clifton Forge, Va., filed a suit July 5 in Cabell Circuit Court seeking compensatory judgment against the company.

According to the suit, Nicely applied to be a railroad freight conductor with CSX in February 2006. To be a conductor, CSX requires applicants to complete a conductor training program and undergo a background check, a drug test, an eye exam and their ability to lift 70 pounds.

"Nicely was informed when he applied for his position at CSX that, upon successful completion of the conductor training program and the other required elements of the application process, he would be hired," the suit says.

Nicely completed the training program at Marshall University, and spent about $4,500 on the program. He passed the other tests and went to Tri-State Medical Center for a color blindness employment screening. According to the suit, immediately after the test he was told he had passed.

"Two days later, however, Nicely received a letter from CSX indicating that his test revealed that he was colorblind and he did not meet the requirements to work for CSX as a conductor," the suit says.

According to the suit, CSX immediately terminated Nicely's employment. Nicely informed CSX the test result was a mistake, and he took another test by another physician, which revealed that he was not colorblind.

Nicely claims he gave CSX the second test results, but they refused to reinstate his employment.

According to the lawsuit, Nicely seeks damages, including compensation for his tuition in the conductor training program.

Attorney Chad S. Lovejoy is representing Nicely. The case has been assigned to Judge John L. Cummings.

Cabell Circuit Court case number 07-C-567

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