Eastern Iowan Sues For Negligence After Amtrak Crash
Janet Williams of Dubuque was on the Amtrak train that derailed in Mendon, Missouri last week, killing four people and injuring several others. She is reportedly one of the first survivors to file lawsuits in the aftermath, according to KWWL.
In a federal lawsuit filed Friday, surviving passenger Janet Williams of Dubuque, Iowa, named Amtrak, BNSF Railway Co. and MS Contracting LLC, the employer of the dump truck driver whose vehicle was struck by the train. The complaint alleges negligent design of the railroad crossing near the town of Mendon, and says the train was packed with too many riders, creating “cattle car conditions".
More is coming out about the scene of the incident, and it's reported that the crossing where it occurred had no lights, signals, or gates to warn of an approaching train. Leaders in Chariton county, Missouri, where the crash took place, had reportedly been lobbying for years to fix these issues, to no avail.
While surviving the crash, Williams stated that she sustained "significant and life-altering injuries" after being thrown from her seat. One of her attorneys cited both Amtrak and BNSF for failing to use "basic railroad crossing safety devices such as warning lights and crossing gates."
Four fatalities have been confirmed from the crash. Rochelle Cook and Kim Holsapple of DeSoto, Kansas, and Binh Pham of Kansas City all died Tuesday at the hospital. Billy Barton II of Brookfield, Missouri was driving the truck in the collision and died in the crash as well.