Our client, Mr. Page, was a railroad police officer who was injured on the job in Maryland (MD). The injury occurred when he responded to a call that an Amtrak employee baggage cart had fallen off the platform and was on the train tracks. After making an emergency call to stop the train, he went to retrieve the car. He dropped down off the platform to get the cart and landed off balance. He did feel pain, but ignored it and got the job done. The train came through and the passengers exited.
Unfortunately, our client's ordeal was only beginning. As many of you know, after you are injured the pain is worse the next day. This was the case with Mr. Page. He suffered major back pain, reported it and was seen by a doctor. Nevertheless, the pain continued, so much so that he was unable to continue working as an Amtrak police officer.
We filed suit for the officer against his former employer, the National Railroad Passenger Corporation ("Amtrak") seeking restitution for the work-related injury. The Circuit Court for Baltimore City granted summary judgment in Amtrak's favor, agreeing with Amtrak that he caused his own injury and that Amtrak could not be held liable.
We agreed to appeal the trial court's decision to throw the case out, and argued that this railroad worker injury law prohibits railroads from arguing that Mr. Page "assumed the risks" and that Amtrak was negligent for failing to monitor the carts. What the case boiled down to was that Amtrak had a duty to provide a safe workplace and that it breached its duty by failing to properly control its baggage carts. The appeal court reversed the trial court, and restored the right to a jury trial.
We finalized a confidential settlement agreement with Amtrak that delivered satisfactory compensation to our client which then avoided a jury trial.