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LAWSUITS NEWS & LEGAL INFORMATION

US Forest Service Recovers $102M in Lawsuit Against Union Pacific


This is a settlement for the Environment Law lawsuit.

Washington, DC: The United States Forest Service sued Union Pacific Railroad for damages incurred as a result of a wildfire in 2000 that was caused by negligence on the part of the railroad.

Specifically the suit alleged that railroad crew was negligent in failing to follow safety protocols in using power tools while working on repairing a section of the track on August 17, 2000.

The plaintiff contended that the defendant's workers failed to use spark shields and clear the area where they were working of any flammable materials. Smoldering bits of metal from the track work ignited a wildfire on the railroad's right of way in the park that claimed 52,000 acres of the Plumas and Lassen National Forests over a three-week period.

Union Pacific was deemed negligent, and the United States Forest Service recovered $102,000,000 in damages for the environmental destruction of 52,000 acres from wildfire. The value of the wildlife and ecosystem in addition to value of standing timber were incorporated into settlement.

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Published on Mar-10-10


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