Montana Jury Awards $4.3M in Train Crash Lawsuit

October 24, 2014

A Cascade County, Mont. jury has awarded $4.3 million in damages to a BNSF Railway employee who was injured in a July 2011 train collision caused by a switching error.

The Great Falls Tribune reported conductor Michael Schnittgen was injured when the train he was on was mistakenly routed to a siding southeast of Great Falls, where it collided with a parked maintenance train.

Schnittgen reported suffering severe back injuries and a head injury.

BNSF acknowledged it was negligent in the collision, but company attorneys questioned the extent of Schnittgen’s injuries, said some weren’t due to the train crash and that Schnittgen failed to take action to mitigate some of them.

The civil trial that ended Tuesday was held to determine the damage amount.

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