Alton and Southern Railway sued over engineer's switch throwing injuries

By Kelly Holleran | Aug 5, 2013


A railroad worker claims he suffered severe injuries to his back, neck, knees, arms, shoulders and rotator cuffs after he attempted to throw a switch while working.

Frank A. Dejarnette filed a lawsuit July 23 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against The Alton and Southern Railway Company.

In his complaint, Dejarnette alleges he was working as an engineer for the The Alton and Southern Railway Company on March 9, 2012, at about 11 a.m. when he sustained injuries while attempting to throw a switch in the yard.

In addition to his injuries, Dejarnette suffered an impaired earning capacity because of the incident, according to the complaint.

Dejarnette blames the railway for causing his injuries, saying it negligently failed to provide him with a safe place to work, failed to provide safe footing at the road bed when he was attempting to flip the switch, failed to repair the switch and exposed the switch to increased amounts of mud and dirt that impaired its ability to properly function.

In his complaint, Dejarnette seeks a judgment of more than $50,000, plus costs.

John T. Papa of Callis, Papa, Hale and Szewczyk in Granite City will be representing him.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 13-L-381.

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