Date Decided: Mar 7th, 2011

Decided By: Indiana Northern District Court (Federal)

Court: United States District Court for the Northern District of Indiana

Citation: 2011 WL 854350


Background:

This case arose out of injuries Brad Boyd ("Boyd") allegedly
sustained between 2005 and 2007 while employed by CSX Transportation, Inc. ("CSX").


Boyd began his employment with CSX in 1999 where he worked
as a brakeman and conductor. These positions required Boyd to throw switches to
facilitate loading and unloading of trains in CSX rail yards. In 2005, Boyd
became a road engineer and worked in this position until 2007. Here, Boyd was
required to ride trains between Avon, Indiana, and Cincinnati, Ohio where a
portion of the trip was over "rough track."

In 2010, Boyd brought a negligence action against CSX under
the Federal Employers' Liability Act ("FELA"), 45 U.S.C. 51 et seq. Boyd sought damages to compensate him for injuries
he alleges he sustained as a result of exposure to excessive whole-body
vibration.

In the complaint, Boyd alleges that CSX violated the
Locomotive Inspection Act ("LIA"), 49
U.S.C. 20701-20703
by failing to provide locomotives in a proper condition
and safe to operate with unnecessary peril to life or limb, and the Federal
Track Safety Standards ("FTSS"), 49
C.F.R. 213 et seq
. by failing to properly maintain its tracks.

In support of his allegations, Boyd presented experts Alan
Blackwell ("Blackwell") and Paul Byrnes ("Byrnes") who testified that the
stretches of track Boyd was exposed to failed to comply with the FTSS. Boyd
also presented Dr. Dennis Gates ("Dr. Gates") who testified Boyd's degenerative
disc disease was aggravated by the vibrations he was subject to during his
trips between Avon and Cincinnati.

Before the Court is CSX's Motion to Exclude the testimony of
Dr. Gates and its Motion for Summary Judgment. CSX argues that Dr. Gates'
testimony regarding the cause of Boyd's injury is inadmissible under Federal
Rule of Evidence 702 and as a result, Boyd cannot survive its Motion for Summary
Judgment.


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