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Widow of dump truck driver killed in train derailment files wrongful death lawsuit

BNSF employee, Chariton County named in lawsuit
Amtrak NTSB train derail Mendon crash 2.png
Posted at 2:39 PM, Jun 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-06 14:42:17-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The widow of the dump truck driver that was killed in Monday’s Amtrak train derailment near Mendon, Missouri, has filed a wrongful death lawsuit.

Attorneys representing Erin Barton, the widow to Billy Barton II, filed the wrongful death lawsuit Wednesday in Chariton County, Missouri, Circuit Court.

The lawsuit names a BNSF supervisor, or roadmaster in charge of the tracks where Monday's derailment occurred, and Chariton County, Missouri, as defendants in the lawsuit.

Billy Barton II, 54, was operating the dump truck Monday afternoon over an uncontrolled railroad crossing southwest of of the north-central Missouri town.

At the same time, Amtrak’s Southwest Chief passenger train was traveling nearly 90 miles per hour bound for Chicago when it struck Barton’s dump truck.

Barton's attorneys allege the supervisor should have known the crossing posed "a grave danger" due to the angle of how the tracks and road intersected, the grade of the road around the crossing and obstructing vegetation around the crossing.

A BNSF spokesperson told KSHB 41 News they don't comment on pending litigation.

Barton's attorneys also allege railroad crossing was in a "dangerous condition" and allege the Chariton County Road Authority should have known and taken action about it.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol said Wednesday that train passengers - Rachelle Cook, Kim Holsapple and Bihn Phan - were also killed in the crash.


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