Fire extinguisher injures railroad worker, suit claims

By Steve Gonzalez | Mar 6, 2006

An electrician for Union Pacific Railroad filed a Federal Employers' Liability Act suit in St. Clair County Circuit Court seeking damages in excess of $100,000, claiming he was injured when a fire extinguisher fell from the wall and struck him.

Thomas Stekaniak claims Union Pacific failed to furnish him with a reasonably safe place to work, failed to provide him with a safe method to work, failed to provide adequate lighting, failed to provide functional emergency lighting, required him to work in a dark area and failed to properly secure its equipment.

According to the suit filed March 1, Stekaniak sustained severe and permanent injuries on March 13, 2003, at the Dupo facility. He claims he sustained pain and suffering, incurred a permanent disfigurement and disability, lost wages, has become liable for medical expenses and has sustained a permanent impairment of his enjoyment of life.

Stekaniak also is seeking damages for repetitive trauma claiming since he was hired in 1969, he was routinely required to climb ladders and stairs, work in a kneeling position for extended periods of time and was required to walk on improperly maintained ballast.

He claims his repetitive trauma caused damage to the muscles, tendons, ligaments, bones, joints and nerves of his legs and knees.

Stekaniak is represented by Michael Nowak of Kujawski & Nowak of O'Fallon.

06 L 128 (20th Circuit)

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