A second lawsuit has been filed against a Pennsylvania volunteer fire department in the tragic deaths of a mother and son who were struck by a train.
Sheila R. Singer, 37, and her son, John Smart, 2, were crossing the railroad tracks on October 30, 2009 when Smart’s stroller got stuck in the tracks. Singer was able to get her two other children ages 5 and 1 away off the tracks, but was struck as she was trying to free her son. According to news reports, a friend had just given Singer $50 and she crossed the tracks to buy groceries.
The boy’s father, Elmer Smart, filed a wrongful death suit against the Norfolk Southern Corp. and the Derry Volunteer Fire Department on August 2, 2011 alleging negligence. The fire department’s property abuts the tracks and has a hole in the fence which people use to cross the tracks.
Singer’s lawsuit, filed by her estate, similarly names the Norfolk Southern Corp. and the Derry Volunteer Fire Department as defendants. The allegation in the complaint is that the department was negligent in failing to properly maintain its portion of the fence.