Morici, Longo & Associates attorneys concluded a $6.1 million settlement concerning the wrongful death of an 18-year-old college student killed while working at a suburban railyard. The August 1, 2019 death occurred during the unloading of freight from a railcar. While unloading forest products that had originated in northern Canada, the decedent and his crew were required to cut a retaining cable in order to remove the 6,000 pound load by forklift. Unbeknownst to the crew, a procedure had been devised by the Canadian shipper who loaded the car for the bracing of the load prior to cutting of the cable. Neither the shipper nor the railroad provided any instruction or warning concerning potential “springing” of the load once the cable was released to the plaintiff or his employer. In addition, no warnings were contained on the load or railcar itself.
During extensive written and deposition discovery it was determined that video evidence existed showing that the banding of the forest product had been damaged, presumably during loading in Canada. Several weeks passed while the load was transported to Illinois. During that time, neither the shipper nor the railroad provided any information to the Plaintiff’s employer that the securement of the load had been compromised.
Morici, Longo & Associates, utilized the services of a widely regarded expert in the field of load securement and engineering to provide standards and policies and procedures necessary to protect loading and unloading operations.
The decedent was survived by his mother, father, and two siblings who were part of a wonderful closeknit family. Each of them were deposed during the course of the litigation and told compelling and heartbreaking stories of the grief that had been visited upon their family by the boy’s tragic death. In response to the tragedy, they helped fund an organization to assist parents with grief counseling over the deaths of teenagers and young adults.
This result is one in a long line of substantial seven-figure recoveries made through settlement and/or trial by the firm and its lawyers in matters involving death or great disability as a result of construction site injuries, motor vehicle collisions, or the failure of dangerous products.