Railroad worker sues after leg severed

David Yates Jul. 11, 2007, 9:44am

Perry Ashworth's leg was mutilated and severed below the knee when the rail car he was working on at the Huntsman Refinery rolled over him.

Ashworth and his wife Bambi are suing his employer Railserve Inc., Rescar Inc. and Huntsman Petrochemical Corp. Ashworth claims he set the rail car's manual brake, but it rolled back anyway.

The Port Arthur couple filed their personal injury lawsuit with the Jefferson County District Court on July 10. Judge Donald Floyd, 172nd Judicial District, will preside over the case.

According to the plaintiffs' original petition, on April 20 Ashworth was working to rearrange the rail cars so that they could be "spotted." Ashworth engaged the manual break and then started to uncouple the end rail car.

"The rail car rolled on plaintiff ... and his right leg became entangled," the suit said. "Ashworth's leg was mutilated and severed below the knee. As a result of his injuries, Ashworth was hospitalized and will be impaired for the remainder of his life."

Ashworth is citing the Federal Employers' Liability Act and claiming his employer, Railserve, was negligent for failing to provide him a safe place to work and for failing to comply with government regulations, the suit said.

He is also blaming Rescar for failing to maintain the brakes on the rail car, and Huntsman for failing to ensure the safety of workers on its premise.

He is suing for past and future medical expenses, physical pain, impairment, disfigurement, and mental anguish.

Ashworth's wife is suing for loss of consortium.

The plaintiffs are represented by the attorney Tommy Yeates of the Moore, Landrey law firm.

Case No. E179-635

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