Another federal district court judge has rejected rail management’s bogus "election of remedies" defense to Federal Rail Safety Act whistleblower retaliation complaints.

Reed v. Norfolk Southern Railway Company concerned a trackman who was fired after reporting an injury. While the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees union was representing him for that disciplinary action, Reed also filed a complaint

"If you see something, say something, except if you work for the railroad . . . " That was the theme of the nation’s second FRSA jury trial, resulting in a $1.5 million verdict for two workers who were disciplined after reporting a safety hazard. This was a FRSA only claim, and combined, the two

It’s a common scenario: employee reports injury; railroad conducts investigation of the injury; railroad declares the employee’s statements about the injury somehow to be “inconsistent” or “misleading” or “false” and fires him for dishonesty. Two recent decisions explain why that is a violation of the Federal Rail Safety Act.

In Henderson v. Wheeling &