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ARTICLE ID 42417

$________ GROSS Failure to provide safe workplace - Plaintiff attacked by intoxicated passenger on train - Cervical disc herniation - Post- traumatic stress disorder.

Philadelphia County

The plaintiff was a train conductor employed by the defendant New Jersey Transit Rail Operations when he was attacked by one of the passengers on the train. The plaintiff claimed the defendant railroad required him to deal with unruly passengers, yet provided no training or back-up security. The defendant railroad maintained it was not responsible for the criminal acts of a third party and that the plaintiff was comparatively negligent. The woman who attacked the plaintiff was named as an additional defendant in the case.

The plaintiff was a male, approximately 40 years old, at the time in question. He testified he was in the course and scope of his employment as a conductor when his train reached its last stop in Newark, New Jersey. The plaintiff testified he approached the female defendant, who was asleep, to inform her she was required to exit the train.

The plaintiff testified the female defendant was intoxicated and began to hurl racial slurs at him. The plaintiff testified the female defendant turned and struck him in the head as she was exiting the train. The plaintiff testified he asked his co- workers to call the police and followed the woman onto the platform to make sure she was arrested for the assault when the police arrived.

While waiting for the police, the plaintiff testified the female defendant attacked him again, hitting him repeatedly in the face and body with her fists. The plaintiff’s co-workers testified to witnessing the attack on the train and the platform. The female defendant subsequently pled guilty to criminal assault charges in attacking the plaintiff.

The plaintiff’s physicians testified the plaintiff sustained a herniated cervical disc and post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the assault. The plaintiff returned to his prior position with the railroad after 10 months. He treated for approximately a year.

The plaintiff argued that the defendant failed to have adequate security personnel on the train and required the conductors to deal with unruly passengers without providing them with adequate training. The plaintiff also contended that the defendant failed to have any prohibitions against intoxicated passengers or the consumption of alcohol on the train.

The plaintiff argued that the defendant was aware that employees had been assaulted on the trains prior to the attack upon the plaintiff.

The female defendant denied she was intoxicated and testified that the plaintiff was abusive and aggressive towards her. She denied striking the plaintiff.

The defendant railroad argued that it was not responsible for the acts of the female defendant. The railroad also contended that the plaintiff should have telephoned police from the train and avoided the female defendant until the police arrived. The defense argued that the plaintiff was comparatively negligent for following the female defendant onto the platform and allowing a second incident to occur. The defendant additionally disputed the injuries which the plaintiff claimed to have sustained as a result of the assault.

The jury found the additional defendant 53% negligent, New Jersey Transit Rail Operations 30% negligent and the plaintiff 17% comparatively negligent. The plaintiff was awarded $________, reduced by comparative negligence to $________.

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