Railroad Conductor Suffers Electric Shock Injury

railroad safety expert witnessThis case involves a 50-year-old man who worked as a railroad conductor. The conductor had his hand on an iron handle while he was holding the door open to let a coworker enter the car. He used his other hand to hold a guardrail at the station, outside of the train car. He received a significant electric shock during the incident. It is alleged that the iron handle, was improperly grounded. This incident occurred at a station in Montana.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • 1. Describe your experience as it pertains to electrical grounding for railway cars and stations.
  • 2. Have you ever served as an expert witness on a case similar to the situation described above?
  • 3. Do you have specific experience with electric traction issues?

Expert Witness Response E-009849

I have served as a project manager for both rolling stock procurements (“railway cars”) and as a project manager for new and rehabilitated passenger rail stations. In those roles, I was responsible for safety certification of all project elements, including the grounding requirements. Additionally, I was involved with electric traction construction. I have specific experience with the type of rail car in question. I have also reviewed similar accident/safety events internally.

Expert Witness Response E-013057

I have hands on experience with traction motors, their gearboxes, and the grounding that goes along with connecting the whole system – through bearing structure, to axle, wheel, ground, etc. I worked in the electrical engineering industry for several years doing this type of work and have a great deal of railroad experience.


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