Union Pacific sues truck driver for causing train derailment

Michelle Massey Jan. 4, 2011, 2:29am


Union Pacific is suing a truck driver for failing to yield at a truck crossing and for causing a collision and derailment of its train.

Union Pacific Railroad Co. filed a lawsuit against Vernon Jones, Raymond Williams and SC National Continental Insurance Co. on Dec. 17 in federal court in New Orleans.

The incident occurred on Nov. 25, 2010 in St. James Parish as Union Pacific was operating a train traveling westbound on the Union Pacific main line. According to the lawsuit, defendant Williams was operating a truck with a sugar cane trailer traveling southbound and attempted to cross the tracks. The Union Pacific train struck the truck, causing derailment of engines and cars. The derailment caused severe damage to Union Pacific equipment, rail track structure and damage to the engine.

Defendant Williams is accused of failing to yield to the oncoming train and for negligently and recklessly attempting to cross the train tracks.

Defendant Jones was the owner of the truck/trailer operated by Williams. Defendant Jones is accused of negligence for failing to train or instruct Williams as to the proper operations of a truck at a crossing or to yield to trains and to take all precautions to avoid collisions and failing to monitor and supervise Williams.

Union Pacific is represented by William H. Howard III, Alissa J. Allison and Kathlyn G. Perez of Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz in New Orleans.

U.S. District Judge Carl J. Barbier is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:10-cv-04575

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