Derailed Amtrak train in Mendon, Missouri

Hupy & Abraham, S.C., Romanucci & Blandin, LLC, and Cross Law Firm, LLC together announce the filing of a civil law suit on behalf of an injured passenger in the Amtrak derailment in Mendon, Missouri on June 27, 2022.

The complaint was filed in U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Missouri on July 8, 2022. The plaintiff is Marion Stephens, who was injured in the derailment. The defendants are National Railroad Passenger Corporation, a/k/a Amtrak, BNSF Railway Company and MS Contracting, LLC, which owned and operated the dump truck involved in the derailment. It contains three counts of negligence, one for each defendant, and calls for a jury trial.

This legal action arises out of the catastrophic injuries that Marion Stephens sustained when Amtrak Southwest Chief Train 4 derailed after colliding with a dump truck at an uncontrolled crossing in Mendon, Missouri. At the time of the derailment, Amtrak intentionally overcrowded passengers, placing increased ticket sales (and by extension profits) over the safety of passengers onboard the Amtrak Southwest Chief Train 4. As a result, approximately 275 passengers and 12 crew members were recklessly thrusted in harm’s way, resulting in four deaths (three passengers onboard the train and the truck driver employed by defendant MS Contracting, LLC), with upwards of 150 people reported injured.

The death and destruction caused by defendants’ combined negligence was needless and completely preventable. The cause is clear—the ongoing carelessness of defendants Amtrak and BNSF. Amtrak and BNSF were aware of this threat for years, with both receiving numerous warnings and notices about this passive railroad crossing and requests to upgrade it by adding necessary protective devices, pleas that went ignored.

The plaintiff is represented by Founding Partner Antonio M. Romanucci, Partner Martin D. Gould and Partner David A. Neiman of Romanucci & Blandin, LLC, Partner Gerald “Lee” Cross of Cross Law Firm, and Partner Vito Manicioto of Hupy & Abraham, S.C.

“This tragedy was clearly both foreseeable and preventable, and calls to light the need for enhanced safety protections at this particular passive railroad crossing but also at the many others across the country so that more innocent people are not injured or killed,” said Partner Vito Manicioto of Hupy & Abraham, S.C.

“By placing profits over safety, by promoting its bottom line over human life, defendants Amtrak and BNSF needlessly put the lives of countless passengers in grave peril, including Marion Stephens. As a result of Amtrak and BNSF’s corporate greed and deception, and reckless disregard for the well-being of its passengers, Marion sustained significant, permanent injuries from which he will never fully recover. Defendants now must be held accountable for their actions and the untold harms they have caused,” said Antonio M. Romanucci, Founding Partner of Romanucci & Blandin.

“The injuries and trauma suffered by our client and others are the direct result of negligence by the defendants, and we are firmly committed to securing justice on their behalf,” said Partner Gerald “Lee” Cross of Cross Law Firm, LLC.

Jill Erin Wellskopf
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