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Recent Naperville Train Collision Kills Dance Teacher

A 26-year-old woman was killed in a train-car accident in Chicago in April. Dance teacher Katie Lunn was struck in her SUV when the warning lights and bells failed to engage to signal an oncoming train.

It appears that the train crew that was working on the track the day before accidentally shut off the warning lights system, resulting in the failure. The accident is believed to be caused by human error, which underscores the need for multiple levels of quality control in U.S. train systems.

Estimates of train-vehicle collisions in the United States indicate that about 5,800 such accidents occur annually, and more than half involve non-existent or malfunctioning safety devices.

The train crash involving Katie Lunn is currently under investigation by several agencies, led by the Federal Railroad Administration, and it is not yet clear what actions will be taken. It is entirely possible that the train company will receive a fine for its workers' negligence, even though the warning signals on the train itself were in working order.

Katie Lunn's family may also decide to pursue civil action against the train company or other involved parties. Wrongful death lawsuits are common in cases such as these, when negligence can be easily substantiated through eye-witness testimony and the investigation.

To avoid future train-car accidents associated with this intersection, a flagman is now stationed at the train crossing and the trains that use this particular section of track have been given a slow-down order. The problem, of course, is that train-car accidents can occur anywhere at highway or road crossings. The unfortunate death of Katie Lunn may inspire more efficient safety protocol for warning signals and other measures through federal legislation.

What Our Clients Say About Us

  • "Committed To My Cause"

    I was struck by a car while cycling and severely, almost fatally injured. A team of excellent medical professionals performed complicated and extensive surgical and medical procedures as part of a successful effort to restore my health....-Jeff D.

  • "Could not have made a better choice"

    We found Mark [Mathys] through the web after an auto accident in October 2011. While selecting someone you don't know to represent you can be a gamble, we could not have made a better choice....- Dave

  • "Very satisfied"

    Mark [Mathys] is very professional. He responds almost immediately, via email, to any question, comment or concern I have and if he is not able to respond right away, he will let me know. I have been very satisfied with Mark so far and I am happy to be his client.-Jennifer

  • "Easy to talk to"

    Mr. Mathys and Mr. Schneid were very professional and easy to talk to. Prior to working with them, my wife and I had no real experience with the legal system beyond a house closing, yet Mr. Mathys and Mr. Schneid explained the whole process to us very well. I knew that whenever I had a concern about our case or the legal system in general I could call their office or send an email and receive answers the same day...-Larry

  • "Provided very wise advice"

    I've dealt with attorneys on a variety of issues, almost all of them since leaving college and entering the workplace. Mr. Mathys was the first attorney I had any real experience with, and I was impressed then and remain so. He provided very wise advice and always kept me informed. In the end, he delivered a favorable result. I recommend him highly.- Tyler D.

  • "In-depth knowledge of the law"

    Mark [Schneid] is an excellent and skilled attorney and demonstrated in-depth knowledge of the law when he helped settle my dog bite lawsuit resulting from a traumatic incident. He explained what was needed of me and how I should handle the situation in a professional manner.- Karen K.

  • "They went to bat for me"

    Not long ago I was involved in a car accident where I was hit by a gravel truck at an intersection. After I called Mathys & Schneid, even though I didn't have a very large case, they made me feel like I was one of their most important cases. They went to bat for me with the trucking company's insurance and got me a settlement. I would definitely recommend them to my family and friends.-Dan H.

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