Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Diehl v. CSX Transportation, Inc.

United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania

December 9, 2019

DENORA DIEHL, ROBERT COOK, JENNIFER QUEEN, and LORELEI GORDON, on behalf of themselves and all others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
v.
CSX TRANSPORTATION, INC., Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          KIM R. GIBSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         I. Introduction

         This case arises out of a train derailment that occurred near Hyndman, Pennsylvania in August of 2017. Plaintiffs filed a Class Action Complaint alleging that Defendant CSX Transportation, Inc. negligently operated a train, causing it to derail. Plaintiffs aver that they and other proposed class members were subsequently forced to evacuate their homes and subjected to inconvenience as Defendant repaired the derailment site.

         Pending before the Court are Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 56) and Plaintiffs' Motion for Class Certification (ECF No. 64). The Motions are fully briefed (ECF Nos. 58, 60, 63, 65, 67, 69) and ripe for disposition. For the reasons that follow, the Court GRANTS Defendant's Motion and DENIES Plaintiffs' Motion as moot.

         II. Jurisdiction and Venue

         This Court has subject-matter jurisdiction because at least one plaintiff is diverse from at least one defendant and the amount in controversy exceeds $5, 000, 000. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(d)(2).

         Venue is proper in the Western District of Pennsylvania because Defendant removed this action from Bedford County, which is embraced by this district. 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a).

         III. Factual Background

         The following facts are undisputed unless otherwise noted.[1]

         A. The Derailment and Evacuation

         On the morning of August 2, 2017, a freight train operated by Defendant derailed in Hyndman, Pennsylvania. (ECF No. 65 at 2.) This train was carrying mixed freight, including propane, molten sulfur, asphalt, and phosphoric acid residue. (Id.) The derailment resulted in a fire that burned for two days and led to a mandatory evacuation of approximately 1, 000 people from nearby homes for varying lengths of time. (Id.) Emergency management officials set up a mandatory evacuation zone within a one-mile radius of the derailment and emergency responders went door to door to ensure the evacuation of all residents. (Id. at 4.)

         Plaintiff Jennifer Queen evacuated her home with only her cell phone. (Id.) Her fiancé, Plaintiff Robert Cook, was working at a local hospital at the time of the derailment. (Id.) Mr. Cook and Ms. Queen evacuated their house from August 2 to 5, 2017. (Id. at 5.) They had two dogs and a cat that were left crated during the evacuation and Mr. Cook and Ms. Queen had to clean and sanitize the crates upon returning home. (Id.) Mr. Cook and Ms. Queen additionally had food items that expired and had to be thrown away and left clothes in the washer from before the evacuation that developed mold and a foul odor. (Id.) Mr. Cook and Ms. Queen were not physically injured by the derailment but allegedly suffer from anxiety as a result. (ECF No. 57 ¶ 6; ECF No. 60-1 ¶ 5.)

         Plaintiff Lorelei Gordon and members of her household evacuated their home without time to pack anything. (ECF No. 65 at 5-6.) They evacuated their house from August 2 to 5, 2017. (Id. at 6.) Ms. Gordon kept rabbits outside her house and three of them had died by the time she returned home. (Id.) She also had a dog that was left in her house unattended and she had to clean and sanitize her house upon her return. (Id.) Ms. Gordon additionally had food items that expired and had to be thrown away and left clothes in the washer from before the evacuation that developed mold. (Id.) Ms. Gordon was not physically injured by the derailment but allegedly suffers from anxiety as a result. (ECF No. 57 ¶ 6; ECF No. 60-1 ¶ 5.)

         Plaintiff Denora Diehl and three other people living in her house evacuated her home shortly after the derailment without belongings. (ECF No. 65 at 7.) They evacuated the house from August 2 to 20, 2017. (Id.) Ms. Diehl left two dogs in her house unattended for approximately 48 hours and then had to board one of them for approximately two weeks. (Id.) When Ms. Diehl returned home, the food in her refrigerator had expired and had to be thrown away. (Id.) Ms. Diehl was not ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.