A lawsuit involving a Danville man who alleges he was injured while working at the Norfolk Southern railyard has been moved to federal court.
Donald Berry initially filed the complaint on Sept. 2 in Boyle Circuit Court, claiming Norfolk Southern violated safety regulations and was responsible for the injuries Berry sustained while he was refueling a locomotive in the Danville yard on Oct. 29, 2011.
The rail company, however, was successful last week in its motion to have the case moved to U.S. District Court in Lexington, arguing that state negligence laws are trumped by federal laws as spelled out in the federal Rail Safety Act of 1970 and the Highway Safety Act of 1973.
According to Berry’s lawsuit, he was working for Usher Transport when he was called to refuel a locomotive in Danville. During the refueling, Berry was injured due negligence on the part of Norfolk Southern, which owns and operates the railyard, the complaint states.
The lawsuit does not explain how Berry was injured, to what extent or how the rail company might have been responsible.
In its response to the complaint, Norfolk Southern denies the allegations and asserts that if Berry did suffer injuries as claimed, they were caused by his own negligence.
Berry is seeking an undisclosed amount of damages for pain and suffering, past and future medical expenses, and past and future loss of wages. The complaint was filed by attorneys Jackson Watts of Versailles and William Kvas of Minneapolis.
Norfolk Southern is represented by Robert Cetrulo of Edgewood.