SEATTLE, Jan 04, 2018 (BUSINESS WIRE) —
An individual seriously injured when the motor vehicle he was riding in
was crushed by the Amtrak derailment on Interstate 5 has filed suit, the
first among victims not riding on the train, according to attorneys Clifford
Law Offices, a nationally recognized personal injury and wrongful
death law firm based in Chicago, and the Luvera
Law Firm, plaintiff’s attorneys in Seattle.
This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:
Clifford Law Offices and the Luvera Law Firm yesterday filed the first
passenger lawsuit on behalf of a victim injured in the rail car that was
dangling over Interstate 5 following the derailment. The firms have
currently been retained by 10 individuals who were injured in the Dec.
18 derailment. Today’s lawsuit was filed in Washington state court, King
County, on behalf of Blaine Wilmotte, who was seated in the front seat
as a passenger in a vehicle below as he headed to a job site in the
Seattle area. The 24-year-old suffered multiple traumatic fractures of
his limbs as well as emotional injuries that are ongoing. Also named in
today’s lawsuit is Wilmotte’s wife, Madison.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is investigating the
probable cause of the crash that initially reported the passenger train
was traveling at 80 miles per hour around a curve that called for a
maximum speed of 30 miles per hour.
Michael S. Krzak, partner at Clifford Law Offices handling the matter,
reiterated that several people who were injured or the families of those
who lost loved ones have contacted the firm because of Amtrak
representatives reaching out to them in the hospital with paperwork to
sign without a complete explanation of what their rights are following
such a tragic incident.
“Our clients cannot fathom how Amtrak 501 entered a curve at almost
three times the posted speed limit according to information the NTSB has
released,” Krzak said. “As a common carrier for hire, Amtrak owes a duty
of the highest care to the individuals it is transporting. Amtrak
utterly failed in its duties and responsibilities to the victims on the
train as well as those who were in the unfortunate path of the train as
it left the tracks and crushed numerous vehicles on Interstate 5.
“The filing of these civil lawsuits is the first step in giving the
victims and their families the answers that they need as to what led to
this derailment. The hope is that one day lawsuits like these will raise
awareness and make rail travel safer,” Krzak said.
Robert Gellatly of Luvera Law Firm added, “Drivers should be focused on
the safety of other drivers, not on trains crashing on top of them.”
“Amtrak chooses to run its trains too fast while slow-walking common
sense safety changes,” Gellatly said. “Despite repeated mass tragedies,
Amtrak continues to endanger the public while hiding behind special
federal protection that won’t help them here. We’re sorry this had to
happen again, but are very proud of our clients for standing up to stop
Amtrak from blindly racing toward another senseless tragedy.”
View source version on businesswire.com: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20180104006484/en/
SOURCE: Luvera Law Firm
Clifford Law Offices
Pam Menaker, 847-721-0909
Luvera Law Firm
Annie Alley, 206-913-8663
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