Pennsylvania Record

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Train repairman who alleged Conrail and Norfolk Southern Railway Company's conduct led to his injuries discontinues case

State Court

By Nicholas Malfitano | Sep 12, 2019

Norfolk southern locomotive
Norfolk Southern Railway Company

PHILADELPHIA – Litigation filed by a train repairman who alleged both Conrail and Norfolk Southern Railway disregarded the Federal Employers Liability Act by exposing him to repetitive occupational trauma and leaving him with permanent shoulder and knee injuries, has discontinued his case without prejudice.

Under the rules of civil litigation procedure, this means that the plaintiff will be permitted to refile his case at a later date if he so chooses.

On Aug. 8, counsel for plaintiff William Vickers filed a praecipe to discontinue the lawsuit under those same terms.

Vickers, of Altoona, initially filed suit in the Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas on April 12, 2018 versus Consolidated Rail Corporation of Philadelphia and Norfolk Southern Railway Company, of Norfolk, Va.

Vickers worked as a locomotive repairman for the defendants from 1979 to 2016, usually in the Juniata Locomotive Repair Shop. During that time, he said he was “injured due to unsafe and inadequate working conditions.”

Vickers alleged the defendants violated FELA by negligently failing to provide a reasonably safe place to work and “providing the plaintiff and those working around him with equipment which the defendants knew or should have known caused repetitive trauma injuries as a result of exposure to repetitive occupational trauma,” among other charges.

Vickers claimed that due to suffering the repetitive trauma in question, he suffered a left rotator cuff tear, requiring surgery to his left shoulder on Sept. 21, 2016 and osteoarthritis of his right knee, requiring the total replacement of his right knee of March 7, 2017.

In an answer to the complaint, both rail companies denied liability for Vickers’ injuries and suggested that he had failed to state a claim upon which relief could be granted.

Prior to discontinuance and for one count of FELA violation, the plaintiff was seeking damages in excess of $50,000.

The plaintiff was represented by Luke T. Pepper of Bern Cappelli in Conshohocken and Nicola F. Serianni of Levin Sedran & Berman, in Philadelphia.

The defendants were represented by T.H. Lyda, Nicole E. Bazzy and Daniel J. Hampton of Burns White, in Conshohocken.

Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas case 180401629

From the Pennsylvania Record: Reach Courts Reporter Nicholas Malfitano at

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Norfolk Southern CorporationConrail

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