FELA suit filed after train derails

By David Yates | May 20, 2008

A Kansas City Southern Railway employee has filed suit against his employer and Kinder Morgan Petcoke, claiming he was injured when a train derailed last year.

Richard Beaver filed his suit on May 19 in the Jefferson County District Court.

According to Beaver's petition, on Oct. 3, 2007, while working for KCS on a train, KMP "negligently caused the KCS train, rail cars and locomotives Mr. Beaver was working with to derail."

"This caused Mr. Beaver to suffer injury to his low back and other parts of his body," the suit says.

"Defendant KMP failed to safely inspect, repair and maintain the track; failed to warn Mr. Beaver; failed to establish and enforce proper safety procedures and failed to follow applicable rules, regulations, codes and industry standards."

According to the company Web site, Kinder Morgan Petcoke L.P. is responsible for handling over 10 million tons of petroleum coke, aggregates, soda ash and potash through several terminals located on the Texas Gulf Coast. KMP has facilities in Beaumont, Port Arthur, Houston, Deer Park, Pasadena and Sweeny.

Under the Federal Employer's Liability Act, Beaver is suing KCS for negligently failing to provide him with a safe workplace. "Thus, Plaintiff seeks recovery under the FELA for said violations."

Beaver is seeking exemplary damages from KMP.

He is demanding a trial by jury and is represented by attorney Bristol Baxley.

Judge Gary Sanderson, 60th Judicial District, has been assigned to the case.

Case No. B181-771

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