[9/16/19] Amtrak Victims Awarded Millions
Three people who sued over a deadly Amtrak derailment in Washington state in 2017 have been awarded nearly $17 million by a jury for their pain and suffering. Amtrak had previously admitted negligence when its first paid passenger run on a new route from Tacoma to Portland, Oregon, plunged onto Interstate 5, killing three people and injuring more than 60 others. News outlets report that a federal court jury in Tacoma decided Friday to award $7 million to Blaine Wilmotte, $2 million to his wife, Madison Wilmotte, and $7.75 million to Dale Skyllingstad. U.S. District Court Judge Benjamin Settle said a new trial date should be set for fourth plaintiff Adam Harris’ claims because a doctor testified about an examination of Harris that was not disclosed to Amtrak before trial. In June, the National Transportation Safety Board published its final report on the crash, with the agency’s vice chairman blasting what he described as a “Titanic-like complacency” among those charged with ensuring safe train operations.