The defendant in a Bowie County man’s personal injury lawsuit arising from a 2014 train ride has formally responded to the allegations, according to Texarkana Division of the Eastern Division of Texas records.

National Railroad Passenger Corporation, doing business as Amtrak, submitted an original answer on Oct. 5, asserting plaintiff Bobby Cummings is to blame for his alleged injuries.

“Any injuries or damages sustained by the plaintiff were caused in whole or in part by his own negligent conduct or the conduct of others to whom this defendant is not legally responsible,” the six-page document says.

Cummings sued NRPC last month after he purportedly injured his knee on Aug. 6, 2014 while riding the respondent’s train to Texarkana. According to Cummings’s complaint, he boarded the train and “was told by the attendant that he would not be able to sit downstairs in the disability area, and that he must climb the stairs to the upper level.”

The suit further argues that he ascended the stairs and felt “a severe pain in his left knee, which began swelling.” An Amtrak employee refused to help him walk to the restroom, it says.

Cummings adds he went to a hospital in Texarkana upon his arrival, and “has required a total knee replacement as a direct and proximate result of the defendant’s employee forcing him to climb the stairs.”

NRPC, in turn, insists it “did not have actual or constructive notice of any condition of the plaintiff that would impart knowledge to (it) that the plaintiff may injure his knee or urinate on himself.”

Attorneys Scott H. Tucker and Kristopher B. Knox of the law firm Friday, Eldredge & Clark, LLP in Little Rock, Ark., are representing the respondent.

Texarkana Division of the Eastern Division of Texas Case No. 5:15-CV-158

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