Workplace accident leads to $3.5M suit against Norfolk Southern

By Audrey Holsclaw | Jul 16, 2008

KEYSTONE -- A McDowell County man has filed a $3.5 million lawsuit against Norfolk Southern Railway Company following a July 2007 workplace accident.

Larry Koger of Kimball was employed by Norfolk Southern as a conductor. On July 29, 2007, he was assigned to a locomotive and sustained severe injuries when it was derailed.

According to his suit, filed on July 9, the train approached an electronic signal indicating the train should stop. However, the train did not stop and was derailed.

Filed by James Farina, of the Chicago firm of Hoey & Farina, and Kerry Nessel, of the Huntington firm of Nessel Law Firm, the suit states that Norfolk Southern failed to provide a safe working environment.

Farina and Nessel also state in the suit that the electronic signal was not located along the right of way in an efficient location to provide adequate warning, and that Norfolk Southern failed to regulate its trains' speeds and braking, failed to apply the brakes, failed to observe the signal, failed to comply with Northeast Operating Rules Advisory Committee rules, and failed to stop at the signal.

Filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia, the suit states that Koger sustained serious injuries which caused him and continue to cause him great pain, suffering, inconvenience, anguish, disability, and medical expenses.

He is seeking a trial by jury for the sum of $3.5 million plus suit costs.

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