• 01:29
  • 03.03.2021
Conductor, passenger sue over Amtrak crash
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Conductor, passenger sue over Amtrak crash

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A conductor injured when a speeding Amtrak train flew off the tracks and onto a Washington state highway last month, killing three and injuring dozens, has filed a lawsuit claiming the rail company failed to provide a safe work environment.

Garrick Freeman, who was in the front of the train with the engineer at the time of the December 18 crash, suffered multiple broken ribs, a fractured clavicle and serious internal injuries when the train entered a curve too fast near DuPont, Washington, said his lawyer Anthony Petru, who filed the complaint in Pierce County Superior Court.

Another lawsuit was filed on Wednesday in King County Superior Court on the behalf of passenger Pennie Cottrell who was on board when the train entered a sharp curve and derailed.
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Cottrell suffered multiple broken bones and other injures, according to the complaint.

The train carried 85 passengers and crew members as it made its inaugural run along new 24-kilometre bypass route.

Authorities say it was travelling more than double the posted 48km/h speed limit as it entered the curve, causing it to plunge off an overpass and onto a busy interstate.
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Federal investigators trying to determine the cause of the wreck say their full investigation could take more than a year.

Freeman's lawsuit says Amtrak violated the Federal Employers' Liability Act, which required it to ensure the workplace was free of dangerous conditions.

It also says Amtrak failed to train its employees to operate trains safely on the new route.
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An Amtrak spokesman said on Wednesday evening that the company doesn't comment on pending litigation.
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