BNSF Sued Over 2021 Fatal Wind River Canyon Crash
The daughter of a Wyoming man who was killed in a crash with a Burlington Northern Sante Fe Railway vehicle last year has sued the company in federal court for an unspecified amount.
According to a complaint filed this week, Kellie Martin is suing for the wrongful death of her father, Patrick L. Moore.
The complaint states Moore was killed in a June 18, 2021 collision with a BNSF pickup truck in Wind River Canyon.
According to the complaint, Moore was traveling northbound in Wind River Canyon the evening of the crash. Meanwhile, Douglas Wallage was traveling southbound in a modified Ford F-250 Super Duty truck.
Court documents state Wallage attempted to overtake another vehicle he did not have room to safely pass. A head-on collision ensued.
Moore died from his injuries.
A Wyoming Highway Patrol crash narrative states that Moore was not wearing his seat belt.
Because Wallage was acting as a BNSF employee and operating BNSF equipment when the crash occurred, the company is responsible for Moore's death, the lawsuit states.
"As a direct and proximate result of Wallage's breach of his duty to operate the BNSF vehicle in a safe, prudent and responsible manner and to keep an eye out for other vehicles traveling along the public roadway, Patrick Moore was fatally injured[.]," the lawsuit states. "Wallage's actions as set forth above constitute negligence."
The suit claims that BNSF breached its duty to public safety in hiring and retaining Wallage as an employee.
Attorneys are seeking an unspecified amount in monetary damages for the incident. Those include monetary damages sustained by the loss of Moore's past and future companionship, society and comfort.
Additionally, the lawsuit is asking for punitive damages "sufficient to punish BNSF and prevent future unlawful conduct."