Southfield, MI (Law Firm Newswire) March 4, 2013 – A flatbed truck riding in a parade was hit by a train. Four died and 16 were injured.
“This is a difficult case, as there is evidence to suggest that the truck drove onto the tracks after the red flashing warning lights and bells activated. When this lawsuit gets to settlement negotiations or court, there will be a massive amount of evidence, particularly relating to when the truck drove onto the tracks, when the bells and lights activated and whether or not the train could have stopped in time, or if there was any mechanical failure relating to the lights and bells,” explained Darren Monroe of Litigation Funding Corporation, Michigan.
The irony of this story is that the veterans killed were in a parade in Lubbock, Texas, to honor them for their military service in Iraq and Afghanistan. The flatbed truck they were riding on was in the middle of crossing the tracks when they were hit. Investigators have stated the truck proceeded to cross the tracks after the warning signals started to sound.
The foundation of the lawsuit is that there was negligence and recklessness on the part of the rail company and the company that owned the truck, which led to the fatal collision. Other veterans are expected to join the suit which does not specifically lay out the amount of damages sought from the court. Those filing the wrongful death lawsuit seek to ensure an accident like this does not happen again.
“The suit lists 28 ways in which the railway company was negligent, which include the train not braking, or making any effort to slow down, that the section of the tracks at the crossing was hazardous due to a road grade issue, and that the lights and bells were not triggered in a timely manner,” said Monroe. In addition, the lawsuit suggests the former Army veteran truck driver was not paying attention to what he was doing and was not driving with due care and attention for his passengers on the flat bed.
The railway company is insisting that the results of a federal investigation showed that the truck moved onto the crossing tracks after the bells and lights were activated. Further documentation indicated that crossing’s warning system were set to kick in at least 30 seconds before the arrival of a train. Federal investigators discovered that the day of the fatal accident, only 20 seconds had gone by before the train arrived. This still meets federal guidelines, but other crossings do have a longer warning period.
“There also appears to be an issue of the speed trains on that section of track. It is supposed to be 25 mph, but may be closer to 70 mph. If that is the case the 20 or 30 second warning, initially setup for trains doing 25 mph, may not be adequate,” added Monroe.
The families of the deceased vets may wish to check into litigation funding in order to be able to pay their bills and other expenses, such as any medical care, funeral and burial costs. In order to obtain a lawsuit loan, the plaintiffs just need to either call the litigation funding company or go online and fill out an application form.
“This type of funding may not be for everyone, but by and large, it is just what plaintiffs need to deal with all of the bills, including their usual monthly obligations. Having pre-settlement funding in the bank takes the financial stress away and lets plaintiffs get on with the process of healing and grieving,” stated Monroe.
Litigation Funding Corporation
29777 Telegraph Road, Suite 1310
Southfield, MI 48034