Schlichter Bogard & Denton Submits Briefing in U.S. Supreme Court on Behalf of Injured Railroad Engineer

As previously reported, a case brought by Schlichter Bogard & Denton on behalf of an injured railroad engineer, Bradley LeDure, is scheduled to be heard before the U.S. Supreme Court. The LeDure case, which is of significant importance to railroad workers, concerns the question of whether the locomotive that Mr. LeDure was inspecting when he was injured was “in use” at the time of his injuries, as defined by the Locomotive Inspection Act. Schlichter Bogard & Denton has argued for an interpretation of the Act that would foster workplace safety and protect railroad workers such as Mr. LeDure.

As reported by Law360, Schlichter Bogard & Denton on January 31 filed its brief on behalf of Mr. LeDure. Therein, the firm argues on behalf of Mr. LeDure that the appellate court “erroneously relied on three things when it ruled in favor of Union Pacific in June 2020:  that the locomotive was stationary, that it was on a sidetrack, and that its train was not fully assembled.” The brief goes on to assert that controlling precedent holds “that train cars remain in use even in the presence of these three factors, both individually and in combination.”

Speaking to Law360, Schlichter Bogard & Denton Senior Partner Nelson Wolff stated that there is “clear authority establishing that Congress intended to promote safety and reduce injuries to railroad workers by enacting the Federal Employers’ Liability Act, Locomotive Inspection Act, Safety Appliance Act, and their regulations.” Nelson stated further: “The restrictive interpretation provided by the lower courts undermines that purpose. It also creates perverse incentives for railroads to ignore their responsibility to ensure locomotive and railcars are safe for train crews to use on railroad lines at all times. We are grateful that the Federal Rail Administration, through the Office of the Solicitor General, supports our request, along with rail labor unions. We are hopeful that this legal error will be corrected so that confidence in rail safety for all can be restored.”

Oral argument is set for March 28, 2022.

For more information about Schlichter Bogard & Denton’s Railroad Injury practice, please contact us at 1-800-873-5297 or via email at contact@uselaws.com.